Fonterra said Sir Ralph Norris would step down from its board following the co-operative's annual meeting on November 25.
Fonterra said Norris had made this decision because of his other commitments.
He would also resign from the board of the manager of the Fonterra Shareholders' Fund, also from November 25. Fonterra said board would soon start a process to identify a new independent director.
Norris joined the board in May 2012 as an independent director.