Bimbo Bread? Say what? Class IV Kayaking in Ecuador
November 27th brought as a fun crew from Colorado, Virginia, Austria, and the UK to paddle some of Ecuador's finest Class IV Rivers.
Then, one day while we were in Tena I was out shopping for lunch supplies and, as always, noticed the shelves upon shelves of BIMBO bread. I've always wondered about this brand and in a middle school kind of way snickered to myself about the name. So with the new and improved educational SWA blog in mind I decided to do some research on the brand.
Bimbo bread is a product of a company called Grupo Bimbo which was established in Mexico in 1945. Today, it is one of the biggest baking companies in terms of production volume and distribution around the world.
Grupo Bimbo is the #4 largest food corporation in the world behind Unilever, Kraft Foods, and Nestle. For obvious reasons, they've had some issues selling their products in North America (under the Bimbo name). But, throughout even the most remote areas in Latin America, Bimbo bread is king.
Dave has been spending 2 weeks each season with us for the past four years in preparations for his trip to paddle the Amazon River from source to sea. While Dave is definitely a crazy Brit for wanting to do this, he also has a super cool plan for carrying out his dream. And we are stoked that he's picked us to help him with the whitewater portion of his training!
Back to Bimbo: Unlike in English, the name Bimbo doesn't really mean anything in Spanish. Supposedly the name comes from a mixing of the words "bingo" and "bambi" as the company was trying to appeal to young children. Don't ask me why a Mexican corporation wanted to mix English words for their product, but they kind of blew it if they wanted to market to the English-speaking world!
Bimbo did officially enter the US market in 1996 but not under the Bimbo name. The corporation bought Pacific Pride Bakeries out of San Diego and began to set roots in the US.
Today Bimbo owns a lot of bread in North America as well as Latin America. In the US, "Bimbo USA" now controls Pacific Pride Bakeries, Mrs. Baird's Bakery, Oroweat, Thomas's Bagels, Entenmann's, and Boboli Pizza crusts. Now, aquisition of Sara Lee is in the works. My goodness, Bimbo is taking over the bread world!