28 February 2013

Cargill to expand cocoa pressing capacity at Ilhéus, Brazil

Ilhéus - 28 February 2013 – Cargill will upgrade and expand in 25 percent the cocoa pressing capacity of its Ilhéus plant. The expansion project is already underway and expected to be concluded in early 2014. Cargill is investing more than R$10 million in pressing equipment and a technology platform to ensure higher production efficiency and reduce energy demand of its operations in up to 10 percent. 

Brazil’s swelling middle class is one of the main factors driving consumption of food with richer flavor and more indulgent appeal. Accordingly, the demand for chocolate, ice cream, dairy beverages, cocoa powder beverages, desserts, biscuits, and other products containing cocoa products is on the rise and encourages investment in this industry. 

The Association of Cocoa Processors (AIPC) reports that in 2012 the industry experienced a 3% growth in the processing of cocoa beans. “Cargill’s investment is aligned with the goal of supporting the growth of our customers, with initiatives ranging from encouraging Brazilian cocoa farming to ensuring quality raw materials to implementing new processing technologies to promote ongoing competitiveness,” explains Miguel Sieh, director of Cargill’s Cocoa and Chocolate Business Unit. 

Cargill has operated its Ilhéus plant since 1980. It is one of the main cocoa suppliers in Latin America and processes cocoa beans to produce cocoa powder, liquor, and butter. The facilities employ about 300 people. 

Cargill has been in Brazil since 1965; while its operations started out in agriculture, today the company is one of the largest food companies in the country. Based in São Paulo, SP, the company is present in 14 Brazilian states. Cargill has plants and branch offices in nearly 130 cities in the country and employs more than 8,000 people. 

Cargill is an international producer and trader of food, agricultural, risk management, and industrial products and services. Founded in 1865, the company employs 142,000 people in 65 countries. 

Source: Cargill