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Honoree | Cacique Inc.

Cacique Inc. the leading brand in the Mexican-style cheese, cream and sausage category that started in 1973 has been selected as a Hispanic Lifestyle 2018 Survived and Thrived Business Honoree.  Cacique along with their follow honorees will participate in Hispanic Lifestyle’s BizCon 2018 taking place on June 7, 2018 at the Ontario Airport Hotel and Conference Center.

In October 1971, Jennie and Gilbert de Cardenas immigrated to the U.S. from Cuba after losing their cheese business. Chasing the American dream, Gilbert worked odds jobs to support his family until he found his opportunity while shopping in a small family grocery. They were sampling their Queso Fresco and after just one taste, Gilbert knew he could do better. With only $1,500 in his pocket and a big leap of faith, Gilbert began producing his own Queso Fresco and, in 1973, Cacique was born. Removing the back seats of his teal green Pontiac to outfit it with coolers, Gilbert and his son, Gil, started selling cheese door to door in downtown Los Angeles. For 18 months, Gilbert did this with just the support of his wife and children before finally hiring his first employee.

In 1973, Cacique opened its first plant in Lakewood, CA. Over the next few years, the plant moved to Riverside and then Bloomington, until ultimately ending up in Pasadena in 1977. As the company grew, Cacique continued to invest in technology, including pioneering vacuum seal packages that first allowed the brand to boast a shelf life 30 to 45 days longer than that of its competitors. To this day, Cacique’s fresh cheese continue to have the longest shelf life on the market.

Following a thorough survey about the changing consumer to inform the company’s evolution, Cacique entered its next era in 2011 with the decision to invest in English-speaking media. Already winning with the Hispanic consumer, the brand wanted to reach the next generation of Hispanic consumers and non-Hispanic consumers interested in experiencing authentic Mexican food.

Today, Cacique products are distributed to 25,000 retailers across the U.S. and Cacique is the leading brand in the Mexican-style cheese, cream and sausage category. Cacique is among the largest and most recognized Hispanic food brands in the U.S. market with strong distribution from Boston to Los Angeles, and all points in between. Through it all, the Cacique team maintains its dedication to the company’s values set by the original founders: Family, Integrity, Quality and Authenticity.


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