An executive familiar to many in Canadian agriculture has been tapped to lead Saskatchewan-based crop input and fertilizer giant Nutrien Ltd.

Mayo Schmidt has been appointed president and chief executive officer of Nutrien, effective immediately, according to a statement issued by the company on April 18.

Schmidt is well-known for overseeing the Saskatchewan Wheat Pool’s evolution into the multinational grain company Viterra from 2000 to 2012. He was also the CEO of Hydro One, Ontario’s power utility, from 2015 to 2018. He has served as the chair of Nutrien’s board of directors since May 2019.

The company says Chuck Magro, who served as Nutrien’s president and CEO since the company’s formation through the merger of Agrium and PotashCorp in 2018, has stepped down to pursue other opportunities. He was Agrium’s chief executive prior to the merger.

The board of directors has also named Russ Girling, former president and CEO of TC Energy, as its new chair.

Nutrien owns the world’s largest network of crop input retailers, and is the largest producer of potash and the third largest producer of nitrogen fertilizer in the world, employing around 27,000 people.

The company is slated to release its first quarter earnings results on Monday, May 3.

Watch Shaun Haney discuss the news on RFD-TV

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