CARACAS – After 34 years of uninterrupted activity in the country, the Venezuelan unit of US-based food corporation Cargill will sell all its local assets to an investment firm represented by Phoenix Global Investment, an investment fund, business sources familiar with the matter told local daily TalCual on Tuesday.
Grupo Puig, the manufacturer of renowned cookie and cracker brands such as Galletas María and De Soda also based in Venezuela, will take the reins of Cargill operations in Venezuela.
David McLennan, president and CEO of Cargill Venezuela, said that the company expected to remain in Venezuela to retain jobs of its more than 1,600 workers in the country, among other reasons. McLennan had previously said in 2019 that Venezuela is “the only country in Latin America without positive expectations,” above all when tensions between the administrations of Donald Trump and that of leftist incumbent Nicolás Maduro began to escalate with all the economic sanctions imposed by Washington starting that very same year.
It remains unclear what will become of Cargill’s Un Vaso por La Vida (a cup for life), a social food program in alliance with Dividendo Voluntario para la Comunidad, an NGO, which provided undernourished children of ages between 2-6 years with a high-calorie-and-protein beverage as a complement to a deficient breakfast.
Among other companies that have shut down operations in Venezuela stand out Kellogg’s, General Motors, Kimberly Clark, Bridgestone Firestone, Pirelli, Smurfit Kappa, General Mills, and Clorox.
Cargill is currently the largest privately held corporation in the US in terms of revenue.