The extended family controls about 87% of the company and is ranked as the 11th richest family in the world, with a collective fortune of about $50bn. In October 2007, Cargill announced the recall of nearly 850,000 frozen beef patties produced at its packing plant in Butler, Wisconsin that were suspected of being contaminated with E. Upon Sam Cargill’s death in 1903, William Cargill became the sole owner of the La Crosse office.

Newly formed Ultimate Kronos Group joins the list at No. 138 with sales of $3.3 billion. The cloud computing company specializes in workforce and human resource management. It was formed in April 2020 through the merger of Ultimate Software and Kronos Inc. Other familiar names at the top of the list include candy maker Mars at No. 4, Boston-based investment giant Fidelity at No. 10 and media company Cox Communications at No. 14. The massive size of the company and its continued focus on paying down debt have helped it maintain a good debt rating.

  1. Three more Cargill family members – Alexandra Daitch, Sarah MacMillan and Lucy Stitzer – are also billionaires.
  2. Bayer CropScience develops genetically modified crops and pesticides.
  3. As World War I continued into 1917, Cargill made record earnings and faced criticisms of war profiteering.
  4. Since its founding in 1865 by William W. Cargill, the company has maintained its status as a private company mainly owned by family heirs.

The company ranked number two on Forbes’ list in 2020 with a total of $114.6 billion in revenue, behind Koch Industries. This total puts Cargill in the top is cargill a fortune 500 company 15 on the Fortune 500 list of highest revenue-producing companies. Cargill stockholders have pushed for an initial public offering (IPO) several times.


One of its most popular brands is Fireball, a cinnamon flavored whiskey, which accounts for 45% of the flavored whiskey market. The UN said the war in Ukraine had “spread shocks through markets for staple grains and vegetable oils”. The price of cereals, vegetable oils and meat have reached all-times highs, the FAO said. The UN this month warned that global food prices had soared to a record high because of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. The UN’s Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) said its food price index had risen by 12.6% in March compared with February, “making a giant leap to a new highest level since its inception in 1990”. The home rental company went public via an IPO worth $47 billion in December 2020 after spending just two years on the list.

Largest U.S. companies

The year 1960 marked the first time a non-family member became the company’s chief executive officer (CEO). Their fortunes track those of the giant Cargill food company, which employs more than 155,000 staff in 70 countries and is expected to report record profits this year, outstripping 2021’s record-breaking $5bn profit. After the government of India, Cargill is India’s second-largest buyer of food grain.[citation needed] It has been buying grains and oilseeds in India since 1998.

U.S. 20 largest private companies 2023, by revenue

Grocery store chain Brookshire Brothers, ranked No. 162, returns to the list after 12 years. It fell out of the rankings when list minimum was raised to revenues of $2 billion in 2009. Brookshire Brothers is related to another company on the list, Brookshire Grocery, No. 168. A split between the founding brothers in 1938 resulted in two separate companies. There are 258 companies on this year’s private companies list, up from 246 last year. Inclusion on the list is based on having $2 billion or more in revenue from the most recent fiscal year.

For each company profile, users can access best-in-class supplier intelligence highlighting key products and services, risk of doing business, industry opportunities, key executive information, competitor insights, and much more. Minneapolis-based Cargill was founded at the end of the American Civil War, by William Wallace Cargill. The company has grown from a grain storage facility into an international producer and distributor of agricultural products such as sugar, refined oil, chocolate and turkey. Cargill also provides risk management, commodities trading and transportation services. Descendants of William Cargill and his son-in-law John MacMillan have owned common equity in the company for over 140 years.

Inclusion on the list is based on revenues from the most recent fiscal year. The stock performances of both companies have been rather lackluster over the last five- and 10-year periods, which might give Cargill pause to go public. Bunge shares fell 58% in the last five years and dropped 44% in the last 10 years. Archer Daniels Midland has performed better with a five-year loss of 32% and a 10-year gain of 9%. In the early days, the company allowed the family to have total control of Cargill.

Revenues for Cargill’s most recent fiscal year ending May 2023 were a record $177 billion, up 7% over last year. Some of that growth was due to two significant acquisitions it made in 2023. It purchased Owensboro Grain Company, a Kentucky-based and family-owned soybean refinery and processing facility, in January for an undisclosed sum. In July, Cargill bought the bio-based industrial business of Croda, a British chemical manufacturer, for a reported $1 billion. Ranking 4th on this list of the top 10 largest agricultural companies in the world in 2020.

It previously owned two-thirds of the shares of The Mosaic Company (sold off in 2011), one of the world’s leading producers and marketers of concentrated phosphate and potash crop nutrients. Cargill is one of the largest private companies in the United States. Since its founding in 1865 by William W. Cargill, the company has maintained its status as a private company mainly owned by family heirs. Cargill is one of the largest players in the agricultural, livestock, and processed foods markets.

The invasion has helped push cereal prices up 17% over the past month, with the closure of ports throttling wheat and maize exports from Ukraine. Russian exports have also been slowed by financial and shipping problems. The war has disrupted Black Sea exports of crucial commodities from a region that had been producing more than a quarter of the world’s wheat exports. They join Cargill’s other great-grandchildren Pauline Keinath and Gwendolyn Sontheim Meyer on the richest 500 list. This website is using a security service to protect itself from online attacks. There are several actions that could trigger this block including submitting a certain word or phrase, a SQL command or malformed data.

Cargill remains a family-owned business, as the descendants of the founder (from the Cargill and MacMillan families) own over 90% of it.[12] In January 2023, Brian Sikes was appointed to serve as president and CEO. Accounting firms Deloitte, PricewaterhouseCoopers and Ernst & Young were taken off the list because all three have global headquarters overseas. Warehouse grocery chain Smart & Final was acquired in May 2021 by Bodega Latina, a subsidiary of Mexico’s Grupo Comercial Chedraui. The Nature’s Bounty, a New York-based vitamin maker, was sold to Nestlé in August 2021 for $5.75 billion. Cargill’s focus on paying down its debt has helped it earn an A-rating with Standard & Poor’s (S&P) and Fitch, and an A2 rating from Moody’s.

Critics now argue that some such programs can exclude white and Asian people unfairly from hiring processes. Food prices were already rising before Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine in February, and Cargill’s chief executive, David MacLennan, had said he expected them to remain high throughout 2022. World wheat prices soared by 19.7% during March, while maize prices posted a 19.1% month-on-month increase, hitting a record high along with those of barley and sorghum.

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