Venezuela President Nicolas Maduro is threatening to jail local managers of Kraft Heinz for economic sabotage.

Maduro said late Tuesday that the U.S.-based company was purposefully trying to sow discontent by paralyzing production lines. He said the country's intelligence police would not hesitate to arrest executives.

The South American country has been grappling with severe shortages for years.

Maduro's ruling socialist party faces its stiffest electoral challenge in more than a decade on Sunday. The socialists are expected to lose control of the National Assembly.

Maduro and his predecessor Hugo Chavez made it a habit to single out foreign corporations for criticism, including McDonald's, Clorox Co. and Hilton Worldwide.

Heinz did not immediately respond to a request for comment.