The Food Market Institute has chosen Rick Stein as the vice president of fresh foods, a newly created position.

Stein will be responsible for developing a portfolio that will help members develop and execute their fresh foods strategies.

Before joining FMI, he was vice present of retail merchandising and marketing execution for Safeway. He led marketing activities for Safeway’s eastern division, which included 20,000 employees in 180 locations. In his more than 30 years at Safeway, he served in both divisional and corporate roles in areas including sales and marketing, according to a news release.

“Rick’s breadth of experience will lend itself to addressing some of our members’ most critical and challenging issues, particularly in fresh foods categories — from marketing and merchandising, to supply chain and store operations, with a holistic, 360-degree perspective, that will help us — to help them, achieve their marketplace objectives,” Mark Baum, FMI senior vice president and chief collaboration officer, said in a press release. “Rick will also help FMI to build out our Total Store Collaboration platform and capabilities.”