Russia's agriculture ministry has reported that Cargill, the American food and agriculture giant, plans to invest US$200m into a series of projects in the country.

Cargill, which is based in Minnesota, is expected to invest $100m into building a new crushing plant to make vegetable oil in Voronezh, southern Russia, and a further $50m into a malting plant in Tula, near Moscow.

The remaining $50m will be invested in Cargill's nearby Yefremovsky glucose and syrup plant, in which it has had a controlling stake since 1995.

Cargill, which made a profit of $800m last year, will start the investment programme by the end of the year.