Just 10 Companies Control Most of the World’s Food & Beverages!

By: Patricia Ann Talley, Editor

A recent report in the Spanish-language business website Bizxt1 revealed that just 10 companies produce and control most of the food and beverages in the world – just 10 companies, 6 from the USA and 4 from Europe.

These companies take grains and other natural resources, process them, and then sell these products around the world. These 10 companies have combined annual sales of $390.8 billion USD ($390,800,000,000). The food processing industry is not labor intensive as per the chart below.

These processed foods often have high sugar content or contain other processed ingredients that may affect your health. In Zihuatanejo, Guerrero, the store shelves are lined with these products and health officials report that over 80% of the population is now obese or overweight.2 Many mothers are calling to go “back to basics” and are buying organic foods that can be obtained through local growers.

Learn more about these companies and the products that you buy.

#1 Nestlé: Annual sales of $90.2 billion USD with 328,000 employees.

Nestlé is located in Switzerland and operates in almost every country in the world. It sells, bottled water; cereals; chocolate & confectionery; coffee; culinary, chilled and frozen food; dairy; drinks, food service; Healthcare nutrition; ice cream; pet care products; and weight management products.

#2 Pepsico: Annual sales of $62.8 billion USD with 264,000 employees

Pepsico is located in New York, USA. In addition to Pepsi, Diet Pepsi and Pepsi MAX and Gatorade, the company also owns Frito-Lay snack brands, including LAY’S potato chips and FRITOS corn chips. Other brands include Quaker Oats, Quaker Rice Cakes and Quaker Chewy Granola Bars. Cereals include Quaker Life Cereal and Cap’n Crunch. Plus, it has Rice-A-Roni side dishes, and Aunt Jemima pancake syrups and mixes.

#3 Unilever: Annual sales of $48.3 billion with 169,000 employees

Unilever is a Dutch-British company co-headquartered in Rotterdam, Netherlands and in London, England. Its products include food, beverages, cleaning agents and personal care products. According the company website, 7 out of every 10 households around the world contain at least one Unilever product, including brands like Lipton, Knorr, Dove, Axe, and Hellmann’s.

#4 Coca Cola: Annual sales of 41.9 billion USD with 100,300 employees

The Coca Cola Company is located in Georgia, USA. It is the world’s largest beverage company with more than 500 brands and nearly 3,900 beverage choices. Brands include Diet Coke, Coca-Cola Zero, Fanta, Sprite, Dasani, Powerade, Minute Maid, Simply, Del Valle, Georgia and Gold Peak.

#5 Mars: Annual sales of $35 billion USD with about 16,000 employees

Mars is located in New Jersey, USA, and is one of the world’s leading chocolate manufacturers. Mars Chocolate features 29 brands, including M&M’S, SNICKERS, DOVE/GALAXY, MARS/MILKY WAY and TWIX Candy. The company sells its products world-wide.

#6 General MillsAnnual sales of $33.2 billion USD with 39,000 employees

General Mills is located in Minnesota, USA. Products include ready-to-eat cereals, refrigerated yogurt, ready-to-serve soup, dry dinners, shelf stable and frozen vegetables, refrigerated and frozen dough products, dessert and baking mixes, frozen pizza and pizza snacks, grain, fruit and savory snacks. General Mills sells food in more than 100 countries.

#7 Mondelez InternationalAnnual sales of $25.9 billion USD with about 90,000 employees

Mondelez International in located in Illinois, USA. Its brands include Cadbury, Oreo, Milka Chocolate and Trident gum, and it is a leading global snacking company. The firm’s portfolio consists of biscuits, chocolate, beverages, gum and candy, and cheese and groceries.

#8 DanoneAnnual sales of $23.7 billion USD with 99,187 employees

Danone is based in Paris, France. It has four business lines: Fresh Dairy products, Waters, Early Life Nutrition and Medical Nutrition. It sells brands including Dannon (US) and Activia yogurts, Evian and Bonafant bottled waters. Danone is present in over 140 markets.

#9 Associated British Foods: Annual sales of $16.8 billion USD with 130,000 employees

Associated British Foods, PLC is located in London, England. ABF is a diversified international food, ingredients and retail group with five business segments: Sugar; Agriculture; Retail; Grocery; and Ingredients and operations in 50 countries.

#10 Kellogg’s: Annual sales of $13.0 billion USD with 37,369 employees

The Kellogg Company is located in Michigan, USA. The companies and its subsidiaries are engaged in the manufacture and marketing of ready-to-eat cereal and convenience foods with world-wide distribution.


  1. Estas son las 10 marcas que controlan todo lo que compras (y tu vida).” , April 4, 2017. http://gobiznext.com/empresas/estas-las-10-marcas-controlan-lo-compras-vida/
  2. Statistia, The Statistic Portal. https://www.statista.com/markets/

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