The Meat Industry Association (MIA) has appointed Sirma Karapeeva as the organisation's new chief executive.
Karapeeva, who is currently MIA's trade and economic manager, has been with the trade association since 2015.
She succeeds Tim Ritchie, who is retiring after 12 years in the role.
Chairman of MIA, John Loughlin, said the association was pleased to be able to appoint someone of Karapeeva's calibre.
"She has built up important relationships across government and the industry and this will be vital as we collaborate with others to advance the interests of the red meat sector and New Zealand's wider primary sector," said Loughlin.
"Sirma has a strong understanding of the red meat sector's priorities and challenges, practical experience and understanding of the international trade environment, negotiations and agreements and expertise in policy development."
He also acknowledged Tim Ritchie for his service to the meat processing and exporting industry.
"He has made an outstanding contribution and we wish him well in his retirement."
Karapeeva said she was looking forward to the new role.
"The red meat sector is operating in an increasingly complex environment and faces a number of challenges both domestically and internationally.
"I am looking forward to supporting the sector to capture opportunities and position the industry as an innovative and progressive producer and exporter of safe, high-quality food. Meat processing is the country's largest manufacturing industry and makes a significant contribution to New Zealand," said Karapeeva.
The Meat Industry Association of New Zealand is the voluntary trade association representing processors, marketers, and exporters of New Zealand red meat, rendered products, and hides and skins.