FoodNiche Summit

Meghan Mcilroy is Director in North America Disruptive R&D at Kraft Heinz, a trusted food producer of a wide ranging food and beverage portfolio, based in Glenview, IL. She is responsible for delivering on Environmental and Social Governance commitments on nutrition, sourcing, and net zero efforts. She also oversees US Export R&D and R&D Knowledge and Communications.

Prior to her current role, she was responsible for driving growth, managing costs, and ensuring business continuity through product development in the Kraft Heinz Cheese portfolio including brands such as Kraft and Cracker Barrel Natural Cheese, Kraft Singles, Velveeta, Kraft Grated Parmesan Cheese, Athenos Feta and Hummus.

Meghan also led R&D for Kraft Heinz Canada’s portfolio including brands such as Kraft, Heinz, Maxwell House, Philadelphia, and Renee’s across retail and foodservice business. Over her career, she has overseen major US product launches such as Kraft Macaroni and Cheese Renovation, Cracker Barrel Macaroni and Cheese Innovation, and Jell-O Refrigerated Ready to Eat Gelatin Renovation.

Other past experiences include global research programs, proprietary ingredient development, portfolio management tools and commercialization processes, consumer research, product development, and quality system exposure.

She has a BS in Food Science from Cornell University. Past research includes Listeria characterization and milk spoilage. She is active in Girl Scouts as a Troop Leader and Co-President of Lincoln Middle School Parent Teacher Organization. She also contributes time at work and in her community toward hunger relief and STEM education. Previous leadership includes Kraft Employee Fund Council Member (2005-2007) and IFT Scholarship Jury (2016, 2017).