Mars Petcare is fortifying its leadership team, appointing Alejandro (Alex) Cedeno to the role of senior vice president of research and development (R&D) for its North America arm.
In the role, Cedeno will oversee R&D across quality and food safety, product, process and packaging innovation, renovation and productivity, sustainability, and regulatory and scientific affairs. Cedeno will also create and drive global R&D strategies while developing innovative strategies across the company’s pet nutrition brands, leveraging breakthrough science and technology.
A 28-year veteran of R&D in the CPG industry, Cedeno brings a strong background, spending time at leading brands like J.M. Smucker Company, where he was VP of research and development of pet food and snacks. In that role, he led innovation in pet food and oversaw organizational and technical operations. Prior to that, he held similar roles at Mead WestVaco (now WestRock) and Procter & Gamble in North America, Europe, and South America.
"I'm honored to be joining Mars Petcare, a company that is focused on delivering its purpose with a dynamic team of associates who are committed to making life better for pets and pet parents," said Cedeno. "R&D continues to transform the way we deliver on pet health through food and I'm looking forward to partnering with the team to accelerate our pet nutrition growth aspirations."
Ikdeep Singh, global president, Mars Pet Nutrition, said Cedeno is a “people-first leader with a disruptive and innovative mindset."
"A better world for pets is our purpose,” Singh added. “It is core to everything we do and I'm confident that his global knowledge, passion for people and pets, and expertise in pet food innovation will make him an immeasurable asset to our pet nutrition R&D team."
Cedeno is replacing Michel Oostwal who is retiring from the role this month. Oostwal spent 12 years with Mars Petcare, helping to launch the company’s first global innovation center in the U.S.