Chile’s largest salmon farmer announces death of founder and president

“Don Gonzalo Vial left an indelible mark on all of us who were lucky enough to know and work with him.”

Gonzalo Vial Vial, the 88-year-old president and founder of the food company Agrosuper has died.

The veteran industry executive, who founded Agrosuper, one of Chile’s largest food manufacturing companies in 1955, died on Tuesday aged 88, according to a statement from the company.

“His leadership and vision of the future led him to create a company based on solid principles and values, with a marked seal of innovation and excellence, rooted in the regions of Chile,” wrote the company Tuesday.

Gonzalo Vial initially pursued a degree in Agronomy at the Pontifical Catholic University, which he pursued for two years before deciding to join his family’s agricultural business on their farm in Doñihue, O’Higgins Region.

It was there that he embarked on a venture involving the production and sale of eggs, marking the early stages of what would eventually become Agrosuper. Today, the group is one of the country’s most important players in the food industry.

The company bought AquaChile, one of the country’s biggest salmon farmers and processors, in 2018 in a deal worth $850 million. And in 2020, Agrosuper moved all of the salmon farming assets of the parent group, including those of Pesquera Los Fiordos, under the AquaChile umbrella. The company now accounts for an estimated 50 percent of Chile’s farmed salmon exports.

In a message on LinkedIn, AquaChile CEO Sady Delgado paid tribute to the Agrosuper founder.

“Don Gonzalo Vial left an indelible mark on all of us who were lucky enough to know and work with him. He was a businessman committed to the regionalization of our country and the future of Chileans, building great companies that changed the opportunities and lives of many people,” wrote Delgado.


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