B&G Foods names new longtime food & beverage leader as its new CEO

B&G Foods Inc., the Parsippany-based maker of food products including Cream of Wheat and Green Giant, has named a new CEO and president, it announced this week.

Kenneth C. “Casey” Keller will take over, effective June 14, for the interim CEO and president, David L. Wenner. Wenner will remain a director of the company and aid in the leadership transition, B&G said.

Keller most recently was CEO and president of JDE Peet’s NV, an Amsterdam-based global coffee and tea company, after leading the merger of Peet’s Coffee — where he was CEO and president — with Jacobs Douwe Egberts in May 2020.

“We feel extremely fortunate to add Casey to our already very strong management team,” Chairman Stephen C. Sherrill said in a prepared statement. “Casey is a food and beverage industry veteran with excellent leadership skills and a proven track record of generating revenue and earnings growth. Casey also has experience with mergers & acquisitions and public company finance, most recently guiding JDE and Peet’s Coffee through a successful merger and post-merger IPO.

“We believe that Casey is the right person to lead B&G Foods and drive our organic and M&A growth strategy, promote our core values, promote our (environmental, social and governance) and diversity, equity and inclusion efforts, and generate value for our stockholders.”

Keller’s experience also includes leadership roles with the Wm. Wrigley Jr. Co., a subsidiary of Mars Inc.; Alberto Culver USA; and H.J. Heinz Co.

“I am incredibly excited to be joining B&G Foods and its very talented and dedicated workforce,” he said in a statement. “We will continue to focus on organic and acquisition growth, innovation, operational improvements, cost reduction efforts and the creation of stockholder value.

“At the same time, we will also continue to promote and further enhance B&G Foods’ corporate social responsibility efforts, including the company’s environmental, sustainability and DEI efforts.”