US food maker Kraft Foods has announced that Linda Hefner is to join the company as executive vice president, global strategy and business development, effective 1 June.

Hefner will be responsible for corporate strategy and merger and acquisition activities for Kraft around the world. She will report to Roger Deromedi, chief executive officer of Kraft Foods, and join Kraft’s executive team.

Hefner, who previously served as CEO of Sara Lee’s underwear, socks and Latin America group, replaces David Owens, who is resigning at the end of May to re-establish his management consulting business in Florida.