Chiquita Brands International Sàrl, formerly known as Chiquita Brands International Inc., is a producer and distributor of bananas and other produce. The company operates under a number of subsidiary brand names, including the flagship Chiquita brand and Fresh Express salads. Chiquita is the leading distributor of bananas in the United States.
Chiquita is the successor to the United Fruit Company. It was formerly controlled by American businessman Carl H. Lindner, Jr., whose majority ownership of the company ended when Chiquita Brands International exited a prepackaged Chapter 11 bankruptcy on 19 March 2002. In 2003, the company acquired the German produce distribution company, Atlanta AG. Fresh Express salads was purchased from Performance Food Group in 2005. Chiquita's former headquarters were located in Charlotte, North Carolina.
On 10 March 2014, Chiquita Brands International Inc. and Fyffes plc announced that the Boards of Directors of both companies unanimously approved a definitive agreement under which Chiquita will combine with Fyffes, in a stock-for-stock transaction that is expected to result in Chiquita shareholders owning approximately 50.7% of ChiquitaFyffes and Fyffes shareholders owning approximately 49.3% of the proposed ChiquitaFyffes, on a fully diluted basis. The agreement would have created the largest banana producer in the world and would have been domiciled in Ireland. An intervening offer by Brazilian companies Cutrale and Safra Group of $611 million in August 2014 was rejected by Chiquita, with the company saying it would continue with its merger with Fyffes. On 24 October, Chiquita announced that the shareholders at a Company Special Meeting had rejected the merger with Fyffes. Instead the Cutrale-Safra acquisition offer was then accepted by the shareholders.