Was watching a special on CNBC on Marriott and was shocked to learn that Marriott doesn’t actually own many hotels.  Rather Real Estate Investment Trusts and other companies own the hotels and pay Marriott to manage them!

That reminded me of two shocking about two product ownership flow charts I have seen:

Who actually owns Common House Hold Products?

You’ll most likely need to click to enlarge the picture:

Common Household Product Matrix

It is almost like you literally can’t avoid buying from a certain company.  For example lets say you don’t like “Dove” because they club baby seals (disclaimer: Dove doesn’t club baby seals) so you buy Axe body wash…it doesn’t matter! You still provided Unilever with money.

You could buy stock in these 10 parent companies and basically own every consumer good in existence!

* I am not sure who created this flow chart so I can’t give credit where credit is due.

Product Ownership Flow Chart for Organic Products

Even crazier is to find out that your favorite “pure” product is owned by a ridiculously huge conglomerate.  I am sure the landscape has changed, but I found an excellent flow chart prepared by Professor Howard out of Michigan University (You’ll have to open the PDF below):


I also found a list of organic parent companies who have lobbied against GMO regulations:

  • Tostito’s Organic
  • Tropicana Organic
  • Naked Juice
  • Odwalla
  • Honest Tea
  • Orville Redenbacher’s Organic
  • Hunt’s Organic
  • Alexia Foods
  • Lightlife
  • Keebler Organic
  • Kellogg’s Organic
  • Bear Naked
  • Kashi
  • Morningstar Farms
  • Wholesome & Hearty
J.M Smucker$388,000
  • Santa Cruz Organics
  • Smucker’s Organic Peanut Butter
  • R.W. Knudsen
  • Natural Brew
  • Tenderleaf Tea
Hormel Foods$374,300
  • Natural Choice
General Mills$519,401
  • Small Planet Foods
  • Cascadian Farm
  • Muir Glen
  • Gold Medal Organic
  • Larabar
Bimbo Bakeries*$338,300
  • Earth Grains
  • DelMonte brand organic pickles
  • DelMonte brand organic canned tomato products
  • Fruit Naturals
  • Dagoba
Dean Foods$253,950
  • White Wave/Silk
  • Horizon
  • Organic Cow of Vermont
Campbell Soup Co.$70,455
  • V8 Organic
  • Prego Organic
  • Swanson’s Organic
  • Pace Organic
  • Campbell’s Organic
  • Bolthouse Farms
  • McCormick Organic Spices

Please note I didn’t verify the data, but some pretty shocking information about some product ownership.