biggest food companies in the world

Top 10 Biggest Food Companies in the World

With ever-increasing global populations and the resulting rising demand for diverse food products, the food industry has seen phenomenal growth over the years and is now the second-biggest industry in the world. The food industry encompasses various activities, including farming, food processing, distribution, marketing, and retailing. Those branches and steps in the food industry are essential to provide the needed daily global food supply. Alongside farming, food manufacturing and food processing companies represent the absolute foundation of the food industry and the basis for the global food supply chain.

Most food companies and farms in the world are locally active, supplying their grown or processed foods to their local or regional market. Among the many food companies in the world, certain food giants have emerged, however. These biggest food companies are active globally and oftentimes offer extensive ranges of different food product types. These largest food companies have a significant influence on what and how people eat, with their products available in countless countries across the globe.

The following ranking lists the biggest food companies in the world by achieved food revenue. Food companies include all companies that are involved in the growing, manufacturing, and processing of foods and food products. Only the revenue generated in these areas are looked at in the ranking, other branches of business these food companies may be involved in are disregarded here.

The 10 Biggest Food Companies in the World 2024

biggest food companies in the world

1. JBS

JBS S.A.

Global food revenue: $71.1 billion

Founded in: 1953
Headquarters: Sao Paulo, Brazil

(Main) Food products: Meat

JBS is the biggest food company in the world. It is particularly known for its position as the world’s leading processor of animal protein. Founded in 1953 by Brazilian rancher Jose Batista-Sobrinho, JBS has expanded its operations significantly over the decades and now boasts a manufacturing presence in over 20 countries, with a workforce of hundreds of thousands of employees worldwide. JBS processes all kinds of meat including beef, pork, lamb, and chicken, and also has a sizable portion of its business dedicated to the production of value-added and packaged foods. The Brazilian company is based in Sao Paulo, Brazil’s largest city.

The portfolio of meat products from JBS is quite thorough and includes fresh, frozen, and refrigerated meat, as well as prepared meat dishes that cater to a variety of tastes and preferences. The company’s strategy centers on a vertically integrated business model that allows it to maintain control over the entire supply chain, from “ranch to table”. This complete supply chain control ensures that JBS can offer its meat all over the world with similar standards, contributing to JBS’s status as the world’s largest food company and biggest global producer and processor of meat.


2. PepsiCo

PepsiCo, Inc.

Global food revenue: $64.0 billion

Founded in: 1965 (through the merger of Pepsi-Cola Company & Frito-Lay, Inc.)
Headquarters: Harrison, New York, USA

(Main) Food products: Snacks & Cereals

PepsiCo stands as the second among the biggest food companies in the world. Founded in 1965 through the merger of Pepsi-Cola and Frito-Lay, the company is involved in both the food and beverages industries. While its flagship brand, Pepsi Cola, is a beverage, most of PepsiCo’s revenue nowadays is achieved through food products. More precisely, PepsiCo has established itself as the largest snack food manufacturer in the world through its various snack brands. The American company is based in Harrison, a small town in upstate New York.

PepsiCo’s success is also grounded in its global distribution and marketing prowess. The company’s snack brands belong to the most known and recognized brands in the food industry and include potato chip brands such as Lay’s, Doritos, and Tosititos. This ability to reach consumers everywhere and create memorable campaigns has cemented PepsiCo’s status as a leader in both the beverage and food industries.


3. Nestlé

Nestlé S.A.

Global food revenue: $56.4 billion

Founded in: 1866
Headquarters: Vevey, Vaud, Switzerland

(Main) Food products: Cereals, Candy, Ice Cream, Snacks, Infant food, Pet food, Dairy food, Specialized food, Frozen food, Soups, Seasonings & Sauces

Nestle comes third among the world’s biggest food companies. The Swiss company was established in 1866 by Swiss-German confectioner Henri Nestle and thus now belongs to the oldest and tradition-rich companies within the global food industry. The company is based in Vevey, a small town in the Swiss Canton of Vaud. Nestle is not only a leading food company, but also the world’s largest company in the combined food & beverage industry. In both the food and beverage industries, Nestle owns numerous brands that encompass a very wide variety of categories. Its food product portfolio includes cereals, candy, ice cream, snacks, infant food, pet food, dairy food, specialized nutrition food, and various kinds of frozen food, among many others.

Nestle’s brands include cereal brands such as Cheerios, ice cream brands such as Häagen-Dazs, candy brands such as KitKat, and pet food brands such as Purina, among many other brands across many other food categories. The company’s extensive brand portfolio is a testament to Nestle’s significant focus on research and development, where the company is also leading within the beverage and food industries, respectively. This heavy priority in research has allowed the company to keep producing numerous products that usually cater to a broad spectrum of tastes and lets the company remain an extraordinarily influential force in the global beverage and food market.


4. Tyson Foods

Tyson Foods, Inc.

Global food revenue: $52.9 billion

Founded in: 1935
Headquarters: Springdale, Arkansas, USA

(Main) Food products: Meat

Tyson Foods ranks fourth among the biggest food companies in the world. The American company is another big force in the realm of animal protein production, being the world’s second-biggest meat producer only after JBS. The company was founded in 1935 by American businessman John Tyson and is based in the small town of Springdale, Arkansas. The company’s range of products includes chicken, beef, pork, and prepared meat-based foods. While Tyson Foods is mainly active in the company’s American home market, it also has a presence in many other corners of the world.

The company is the biggest provider of meat-based foods for households in the U.S. and many other countries. The company is the main supplier of meat to the world’s biggest hypermarket chain Walmart, also based in northwest Arkansas, as well as many other major hypermarket and supermarket chains. Additionally, Tyson Foods is also the biggest meat supplier of some of the biggest fast food restaurant chains in the world, such as McDonald’s, which all contributes to the company’s important status within the food industry.


5. Mars

Mars Inc.

Global food revenue: $50.0 billion

Founded in: 1911
Headquarters: McLean, Virginia, USA

(Main) Food products: Candy, Chewing Gum, Rice & Pet Food

Mars completes the Top Five of the biggest food companies in the world. Mars is a privately owned American company, making it the by far biggest private company within the global food industry. It was founded in 1911 by American businessman Franklin Mars and is owned by the Mars family to this day. The company based in McLean, Virginia is first and foremost known for its many candy brands through which Mars has established itself as the biggest candy company in the world. But Mars has long been involved in other segments of the food industry as well and is also among the globally leading manufacturers of chewing gum, rice, and pet food.

The company’s brand portfolio includes such globally recognized candy brands as M&Ms, Snickers, and Mars, while its chewing gum business is conducted through its Wrigley’s subsidiary. Its pet food business is flag-shipped by the Pedigree and Whiskas brands, while its Uncle Ben’s brand is the most globally known and popular rice product.


6. Mondelez International

Mondelez International, Inc.

Global food revenue: $36.0 billion

Founded in: 2012
Headquarters: Chicago, Illinois, USA

(Main) Food products: Candy, Snacks & Cream Cheese

Mondelez International comes sixth among the biggest food companies in the world. The company was formed in 2012 after ‘Kraft Foods’ decided to split into two independent and publicly traded companies: Kraft Foods for grocery products and Mondelez International for confectionery, candy, and snack products. Mondelez took over all of Kraft’s former candy brands and therefore quickly established itself among the biggest candy and snack producers in the world. The American company is based in Chicago, the largest city in the U.S. state of Illinois.

The company is particularly known for buying popular candy brands from different countries and then integrating them into its corporate structures. Famous examples include the British Cadbury, the Swiss Toblerone, the German Milka, and the Swedish Daim brands. But Mondelez also owns American brands such as, for example, Oreo. Its snack portfolio includes such globally known brands as 7Days, TUC, and Ritz Crackers. Mondelez also owns the world’s most popular cream cheese brand Philadelphia.


7. Danone

Danone S.A.

Global food revenue: $29.9 billion

Founded in: 1919
Headquarters: Paris, Ile-de-France, France

(Main) Food products: Dairy food, Non-dairy Alternative food, Infant food & Specialized food

Danone is the seventh-largest food company in the world. The French company is also the biggest food company in Europe and the world’s biggest manufacturer of dairy products. The company was founded in 1919 in Barcelona, Spain by Greek-born French-Spanish businessman Isaac Carasso, who started the company as a yogurt factory and eventually moved it to France’s capital of Paris, where the company is still based today. Aside from yogurt and other dairy foods, Danone has also built a reputation for providing plant-based alternative foods, infant nutrition, and medical nutrition.

As the world’s leading manufacturer of yogurt, Danone has multiple well-known yogurt brands such as Activia, YoPro, Oikos, and Danone itself in its portfolio. Danone also manufactures various kinds of dairy products under its Alpro brand and non-dairy alternatives under its Silk brand.


8. Kraft Heinz

Kraft Heinz Company

Global food revenue: $26.6 billion

Founded in: 2015 (through the merger of Kraft Foods Inc. & H.J. Heinz Company)
Headquarters: Chicago, Illinois, USA

(Main) Food products: Sauces, Dressings, Pasta, Cheese, Candy & Snacks

Kraft Heinz ranks eighth among the biggest food companies in the world. The Kraft Heinz Company is the result of a merger in 2015 between two of the major historical food companies in the United States: Kraft and Heinz. The combined entity has now become one of the biggest food companies in the world. With its headquarters in Chicago, Illinois (and another one in Pittsburgh), the American food company boasts an extensive portfolio of over 200 brands, most of which are sold and known all over the world. The company is especially well-known and popular for its many sauces and dressings, making it the world’s biggest manufacturer of sauces and dressings.

Kraft Heinz’s brands include Heinz Tomato Ketchup, the world’s most popular ketchup brand while ketchup itself is also the most popular choice of sauce around the world. The company’s brand portfolio also includes, among many others, Miracle Whip, Jell-o, Lunchables, Oscar Meyer Wieners, Kraft Natural Cheese, and Kraft Macaroni & Cheese.


9. Unilever

Unilever PLC

Global food revenue: $22.5 billion

Founded in: 1929 (through the merger of Margarine Unie Ltd & Lever Brothers Ltd)
Headquarters: London, England, UK

(Main) Food products: Ice cream, Sauces, Dressings, Seasonings, Snacks & Candy

Unilever is the ninth biggest food company in the world. The British company is a global giant in the overall consumer goods industry, involved in various industries like cosmetics, home care, and beverages, but also with a vast portfolio of food brands. Established in 1929 through the merger of Dutch margarine company Margarine Unie and British soapmaker company Lever Brothers, many of Unilever’s brands have evolved into globally recognized iconic brands over the decades. The company’s food division has diversified its offerings to include products across various categories such as sauces, dressings, seasonings, snacks & candy.

Additionally, the company has a particular focus on ice cream. Unilever is the world’s largest manufacturer of ice creams and owns multiple of the most popular ice cream brands in the world like Magnum, Ben & Jerry’s or Klondike. Globally popular non-ice cream food brands by Unilever include, among others, Hellmann’s, Colman’s, Knorr, and Marmite.


10. WH Group

WH Group Ltd.

Global food revenue: $21.1 billion

Founded in: 1958
Headquarters: Hong Kong, China

(Main) Food products: Meat

WH Group completes the list of the ten biggest food companies in the world. The Chinese company is the biggest Asian food company and the third-largest manufacturer and processor of meat products. Founded in 1958 and based in the Special Administrative Region of Hong Kong, WH Group has become one of the fastest-growing companies in the global food industry. It gained significant influence and traction in the food industry through many acquisitions over the years, including Smithfield Foods, the largest pork producer in the United States. WH Group now produces millions of tons of meat every year, offering all sorts of meat including beef, poultry, and pork.

The company’s business model is rooted in its integration strategy, which allows for control over every stage of the production and supply chain. This approach ensured WH Group’s fast rise and establishment among the biggest companies in the global food industry and the company’s position as one of the Top Three meat processors in the world.


The 10 Biggest Food Companies in the World:

Headquarters:Main food product type:Food revenue:
1. JBSSao Paulo, BrazilMeat$71.1 billion
2. PEPSICOHarrison, New York, USASnacks$64.0 billion
3. NESTLEVevey, Vaud, SwitzerlandCereals$56.4 billion
4. TYSON FOODSSpringdale, Arkansas, USAMeat$52.9 billion
5. MARSMcLean, Virginia, USACandy$50.0 billion
6. MONDELEZ INTERNATIONALChicago, Illinois, USACandy$36.0 billion
7. DANONEParis, Ile-de-France, FranceDairy foods$29.9 billion
8. KRAFT HEINZChicago, Illinois, USASauces$26.6 billion
9. UNILEVERLondon, England, UKIce Cream$22.5 billion
10. WH GROUPHong Kong, ChinaMeat$21.1 billion
Updated as of March 2024.

The ten biggest food companies in the world. Only food manufacturing and processing companies are ranked. Foodservice/Catering companies, food distribution companies, food retail companies, etc. are not listed. The ranking is based on achieved food revenue only, generated revenue in other non-food branches of business a company may be involved in, is disregarded.


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