‘Big Food’, the Italian brands of the 10 big food sisters


There are just 10 giants grouped under the name ‘Big Food’. They control most of the most celebrated brands on the planet, in food and beverages (but also personal and household hygiene products) marketed worldwide. The connections between the giants and the myriad of their brands come from Oxfam, the international confederation of 17 NGOs working against poverty and social injustice.


‘Big Food,’ the names of the giants

Oxfam identifies ‘Big Food’ in the following industry groups, which behind the scenes dominate the food industries globally: Nestlé, PepsiCo, Coca-Cola, Unilever, Danone, General Mills, Kellogg, Mars, Associated British Foods, and Mondelez.

Three years ago, the nonprofit organization devised the “Behind the label” operation to promote conscious consumer purchases, taking into account each group’s actual commitments on various sustainability fronts.

The ‘Behind the label’ campaign therefore offers consumers an interactive map of the various brands referable to ‘Big Food,’ and a report card bearing the grades assigned by Oxfam to each of the giants on 7 key issues: Land, Women, Farmers, Farmworkers, Climate Change, Transparency, Water.


The interactive map

One click is enough to find out, for example, that Buitoni products are from Nestlé. Coca-Cola’s Sprite. Algida by Unilever. And so on for dozens and dozens of famous products but which are not always easy to associate with the big groups in question.

However, Oxfam’s map reports ‘brands’ mostly known to international audiences, but not as much in Italy. To make it easier for Italian consumers to understand, here is a non-exhaustive list of Italian brands that can be traced back to the 10 sisters:



Food: Maggi, Kit Kat, Nescafé, Nesquik, Pure Life, La valle degli orti, Buitoni, Mare fresco, Maggi.

Beverage preparations: Nescafé, Nesquik, Orzoro.

Sweets: Kit Kat, Smarties, Lion, Galak, After Eight, Polo, Fruit Joy, Perugina, Baci Perugina, Nero Perugina.

Yogurt and milk products: Fructool, Mio, Lc1, Lcz (condensed milk), Sveltesse

Baby products: Mio, Nidina.

Cereals and bars: Fitness, Cheerios, Nesquik cereals, Chocapic, Gluten free corn flakes.

Drinks: Vera water, Belté.



Coke, Fanta, Sprite, Minute maid, Dasani water



Food: Knorr, Lipton, Magnum, Algida, Calvé, Carte d’Or, Cornetto, Max Adventures, Mentadent, Solero, Café nero, Cucciolone, Slim-Fast.

Personal hygiene: Axe, Dove, Badedas, Clear, Fissan, Tigi, Zendium, Glysolid.

Home hygiene: Cif, Coccolino, Svelto, Lysoform.



Pepsi, 7up, Tropicana.



Activia, Actimel, Oikos, Danacol, Vita Snella, Super Mario, Danette.


General Mills

Ice cream: Häagen-Dazs,

Vegetable preserves: Green Giant

Ready-made dishes: Old El Paso Mexican

Cookies: Pillsbury, Betty Crocker.



Cereals and cookies: All Bran, Choco Krave, Coco Pops, Extra, Frosties, Kellog’s Corn Flakes, Miel Pops, Nice Morning, Nutri-Grain, Rice Krispies, Special K.

Savory snacks: Pringles



Pet food: Pedigree, Whiskas, Cesar, Sheba, KiteKat, Frolic, Catsan, Perfect fit, Catisfations.

Sweets: Mars, m&m’s, Snickers, Twix, Bounty, Balisto, Maltesers, Orbit, Freedent, Solano.

Food preparations: Uncle Bens, Suzi Wan, Ebly.

Ice cream: Mars.


Associated British Foods

Twinings tea.



Côte d’Or Ice Cream

Confectionery: Halls, Mikado, Milka, Toblerone

Savory cookies: Ritz, Tuc.

Cheeses: Philadelphia, Sottilette


Marta Strinati

Professional journalist since January 1995, he has worked for newspapers (Il Messaggero, Paese Sera, La Stampa) and periodicals (NumeroUno, Il Salvagente). She is the author of journalistic surveys on food, she has published the book "Reading labels to know what we eat".