Goya was founded in 1936, by Prudencio Unanue Ortiz (1886â€“1976) from Valle de Mena, Spain. Unanue emigrated to Puerto Rico, where he met and married Carolina Casal (1890â€“1984) also a Spanish immigrant. They later moved to New York City. Prudencio believed that his name was too difficult to pronounce for American customers, so he purchased the name of one of his suppliers, a Moroccan sardine company named "Goya". The company was initially set up in the Financial District of Manhattan, importing Spanish foods like olives and olive oil.