Farmfoods deputy chairman William McCreadie has retired from the Scottish frozen food specialist.

It is understood William – known as Willy - stepped down late last month.

McCreadie, who also oversaw property for the group, holds a 5.3% stake alongside the low-profile Herd family, led by Eric Herd, who own the remaining 94.7%. It is not clear if McCreadie intends to retain his shareholding or who will take over his responsibilities.

Farmfoods, based in Cumbernauld, has 312 outlets and is the UK’s second largest frozen food retailer behind Iceland. It expanded out of its Scottish heartland in the 1980s and has expanded through the UK through both small acquisitions and organic growth.

In 2011, the chain reported pre-tax profit of £24m on turnover of £578m, while operating margin grew to 4.3% - it’s highest for a decade. According to Retail Week Knowledge Bank, the chain has benefited from the on-going weakness of the economy as its value-led offer continues to attract cash-strapped consumers.

Farmfoods is also expected to benefit from the number of sites that have become available as result of administrations as it seeks to expand, although management has remained tight-lipped about its plans.

McCreadie and Farmfoods declined to comment.