CAO Cases

Arne Hoel, The World Bank

Latin America & the Caribbean

Colombia / Alqueria-01/Cajica

Family association, owners of an adjacent farm
Date Filed
April 11, 2013
Environmental pollution (water, soil, noise and air)
Case Status
Open - Ombudsman


Alqueria is the third-largest dairy company in Colombia. It processes milk and sub-products into dairy products such as UHT milk, flavored milk, cream and yoghurt (through a joint venture with Danone), as well as fruit beverages from concentrate. IFC has extended a $15 million A loan and $5 million in equity to expand production capacity across the company’s plants; to incur capital expenditure aimed at gaining efficiencies and cost reduction; and to generate incremental working capital.


In April 2013, a complaint was lodged by owners of a farm adjacent to the company’s plant in Cajica raising concerns related to pollution, include industrial discharges to rivers and other local water resources, soil pollution, noise pollution, inadequate disposal of toxic residues, and air emissions.


CAO found the complaint eligible for further assessment in April 2013 and an assessment was conducted in July 2013. Based on discussions held with the stakeholders during the CAO Assessment, the complainants and company agreed to work with CAO's Dispute Resolution function to try to resolve the issues raised in the complaint using a collaborative approach. The assessment process is documented in CAO's Assessment Report, which is available, along with IFC's response, under "View Documents" below.

The parties have been actively engaged in a CAO dispute resolution process to address the complaint since September 2013. In June 2017, Alqueria reached an agreement with the owners of the farm Golpe de Agua, which is adjacent to the company’s operations, addressing the issues raised in the complaint. CAO is overseeing the implementation of the signed agreement, which is confidential at the choice of the parties. Since December 2017, the parties have been following up closely on progress made regarding noise mitigation measures. Next steps include the structured engineering for implementation of those measures. 


CAO is overseeing the implementation of the signed agreement, which is confidential at the choice of the parties.  


Status as of October 3, 2018

Project information

Project Name & Number
Alqueria 28492
Global Manufacturing & Services
Latin America & the Caribbean
Environmental Category
$15 million A loan and $5 million equity

Case Tracker


  • Eligible: Completed
  • Assessment Period: Completed
  • Facilitating Settlement: In Process
  • Monitoring/Close-out: In Process