Does Cargill have too much control?


The latest installment in the Star Tribune's Our Hungry Planet series, shows what we do know--and perhaps, more interestingly, what we don't--about the globally dominant agricultural company.

With more than $120 billion in annual revenues, Minnesota-based Cargill, Inc. is larger than the economies of more than two-thirds of the world's countries, including places like Kuwait and Vietnam. The dominant role it plays in nearly every phase of food production and distribution--flour milling, meat processing, cocoa-processing, fertilizer making, grain trading, etc., etc., etc.--means that it can influence agricultural markets around the world.

So as Cargill's profits jumped 69 percent last year while global food prices spiked, spreading fear of starvation among the global poor, a lot of people wondering if so much power should be held by a privately held company that the public knows so little about. Read Chris Serres extensive report on Cargill here.