• Petrópolis’s plant in Boituva, Brazil, is home to the world’s fastest bottling line, processing 78,000 bottles per hour.
  • Two key ingredients go into making Brazilian beer: 60% malt and 40% high-maltose corn syrup. Cargill is uniquely equipped to supply both.
  • Walter Faria, Petrópolis’s president, shows off the unique portfolio of products that is propelling his company to number-two brewer status in Brazil.

Brewing new partnerships in Brazil

Cargill’s unique ability to provide tailored solutions leads to a special bond with the swiftest-growing beer producer in Brazil.

The relationship with Brazil’s second largest brewer, Petrópolis, is based on connecting many of Cargill’s businesses. Utilizing multiple teams in Argentina and Brazil, Cargill was able to create a customer relationship that went beyond the usual.

Strictly speaking, Cargill is a supplier to Petrópolis. But talk to Walter Faria, the president of Petrópolis, and he will use the term “partner.” The relationship began a few years ago when Cargill’s malt business in Argentina became the exclusive malt supplier to Petrópolis. Since then, Cargill has also become its supplier of high-maltose corn syrup. Between the malt and the syrup, Cargill supplies everything for the beer but the hops, water and yeast. The strategic supply arrangement between Petrópolis and Cargill took about a year to negotiate, and is a prime example of a partnership with great mutual benefits.

“The idea was to build a Strategic Alliance, aligned to the vision and growth strategy of both companies. The agreement includes some elements that make it very difficult for competitors to replicate.”— Gustavo Strasser, General Manager, Cargill Malt, 2006

Faria describes his family-run business as “growing cautiously” at 15 to 20% per year. In an incredibly competitive market, Petrópolis went from zero market share to 13% in less than six years.

“What Walter Faria and his team have accomplished is remarkable,” said Miguel Sieh, who was commercial manager of Cargill’s starches and sweeteners business in South America in 2010. “Their business will be viewed as a case study in business success for years to come.”

New opportunities are being explored and developed by both partners in the operation, including financial services and sweetener ingredients. It is a successful relationship with no signs of stopping, rooted in the companies’ mutual trust. “Reliability and quality build trust,” says Faria. “We believe we have the best beers in Brazil, and one of the reasons is because we use Cargill malt and Cargill maltose.”