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The Empire Of Red Gold: An Eye-Opening Journey into the Global Tomato Paste Trade

An eye-opening journey into the global tomato paste trade, revealing hidden consequences of this everyday consumable.

Keywords: Tomato Paste, Globalisation, Food Industry, Business Ethics, Environmental Impact, Trade Disparities. Three words: Investigative, Enlightening, Revealing


"The Empire Of Red Gold," directed by Jean-Baptiste Malet & Xavier Deleu, and released in 2017, offers an intriguing exploration of the worldwide tomato paste industry. This documentary's relevance in today's context is unparalleled as it brings to light the often overlooked global business intricacies involved in everyday consumables.


The film traces the journey of tomato paste starting from the fields in Africa, through the factories in Italy and China, to the supermarkets in America. This in-depth examination reveals the hidden consequences of this global business.

More Film Analysis



This investigative documentary presents a well-researched and in-depth exploration of the tomato paste industry. The presentation style is engaging, and the wealth of information uncovered is enlightening.

Historical and Factual Context


The documentary delves into the history of the tomato paste industry, its evolution, and its current practices. It uncovers facts like China's dominance in the industry and the economic disparities between developed and developing countries in this trade.

Key themes in the film

  • Globalisation and its effects on industry
  • Economic disparities in global trade
  • The environmental impact of large scale food production
  • The socio-economic dynamics of the tomato paste supply chain

Film Comparisons

Unlike other food industry-focused documentaries on iWonder, "The Empire Of Red Gold" focuses on a single product, tomato paste, providing a unique and in-depth perspective into its global business.

Noteworthy Moments

One significant revelation in the documentary is the extent of exploitation in the tomato farming industry, particularly in developing countries, which is a grim and eye-opening moment.


This documentary has been praised for its comprehensive and insightful exploration of the tomato paste industry. It has been lauded for revealing the hidden realities of this global business.


"The Empire Of Red Gold" offers valuable insights into the global food industry, making it a must-watch for those interested in understanding the far-reaching effects of globalisation and business ethics in our everyday lives.

More film information:


  • Genre: Documentary



  • Jean-Baptiste Malet: Documentary Director
  • Xavier Deleu: Documentary Director



  • Africa: The starting point of the tomato paste journey
  • Italy, China, America: Key players in the global tomato paste industry

Key Questions Raised By The Film:

  • To what extent does globalisation impact the food industry?
  • What are the socio-economic disparities in the global tomato paste trade?
  • How does large scale food production affect the environment?

I wonder what the film would be in another art form

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  1. A famous book, it would be "Fast Food Nation" by Eric Schlosser - both uncover hidden realities of the food industry.
  2. A famous song, it would be "Money" by Pink Floyd - it highlights the impact of money and business ethics.
  3. A famous piece of art, it would be "The Scream" by Edvard Munch - both convey a sense of distress and urgency about societal issues.
  4. A famous celebrity, it would be Leonardo DiCaprio - known for his environmental activism, akin to the film's theme.
  5. A colour, it would be red - representing both tomatoes and the alert about the industry's realities.
  6. A music style, it would be investigative journalism - as both aim to uncover hidden truths.