How long has Bahlsen existed?

Bahlsen was founded in 1889 by Hermann Bahlsen. On 1 July 1898 he took over the “Fabrikgeschäft engl. Cakes und Biscuits” from H. Schmuckler in Friesenstrasse in Hanover and called his company “Hannoversche Cakesfabrik H. Bahlsen”.

Which brands are part of the Bahlsen Group?

The company's diverse product portfolio ranges from modern biscuits and wafers to cakes and seasonal products, and also includes biscuit-based snack bars, sweet snacks and recently organic fruit & nut bars. Internationally the products are marketed mainly under the strong and popular BAHLSEN brand. The products and branding in different countries may sometimes vary as national products, regional references and consumer habits are taken into account. For example, in Germany, Poland, Luxembourg and Austria LEIBNIZ exist as a separate brand for all products which focus on the field of butter biscuits.

The partly international and partly national brands of the Bahlsen Group are as follows: BAHLSEN, LEIBNIZ, PiCK UP!, Brandt, KRAKUSKI, HIT, KORNLAND and RAWBITE.

How many biscuits per year does Bahlsen sell?

The baking production lines have to handle an enormous demand: in the year 2017 alone, approximately 142,686 tonnes of sweet goods were baked and supplied.

What is Bahlsen’s annual turnover?

In 2017 the Bahlsen Group had a turnover of 558,793 million euros.

What is Bahlsen’s international structure?

Since the company was founded, business abroad has played a major role for Bahlsen. Today the company exports its biscuits to more than 55 countries. Bahlsen has its own business units in the regions

  • Germany, Austria &Switzerland
  • UK & Ireland
  • Central & Eastern Europe
  • Western Europe
  • North America
  • Middle East & North Africa
  • China
  • Asia Pacific

How many employees worldwide work for Bahlsen?

The worldwide total of Bahlsen employees is approximately 2,830.

Where does the German word “Keks” come from?

Hermann Bahlsen brought the idea of manufactured “cakes and biscuits” to Germany after a stay in England. Bahlsen Germanised the word “cakes”, and the term “Keks” entered the German Duden dictionary in 1911.

How can I get a response to questions that are not answered in the FAQs?

Please send us a message with your question via our contact form, which you can find on our website under “Contact”.

Does Bahlsen offer factory tours?

Sadly, we cannot meet this request: As a food producer we have to observe strict hygiene regulations for the benefit of our customers and therefore cannot allow visitors into our production areas. This is the only way to guarantee the high quality of our products.

What kind of wheat do you use?

Ever since the 1980s, for the supply of wheat flour to our German production sites we have used the Hedwigsburger Okermühle, which delivers wheat products that derive entirely from controlled contracted cultivation. In total 95% of the wheat that we use in Germany comes from controlled contracted cultivation, which enables us to document traceability and transparency from the farmer’s field to the consumer. For Polish production, too, we have begun to source wheat flour from controlled cultivation and are extending this step by step.

What kind of eggs does Bahlsen use?

Bahlsen uses without exception raw egg products from alternative forms of hen-keeping (floor pens or free range). We source the raw egg products from KAT-certified farms in Germany and neighbouring EU countries. "KAT" stands for "Verein für kontrollierte alternative Tierhaltungsformen e.V." (association for controlled alternative forms of animal husbandry). Conformity to the prescribed conditions for keeping the animals and traceability of the purchased eggs are regularly checked by us, and we also ask about the conditions at previous stages of the supply chain. Bahlsen thus works exclusively with egg suppliers who conform entirely to the legal requirements of animal welfare.

Does Bahlsen use palm oil?

Bahlsen uses palm oil in its products. Due to technological properties, palm oil cannot readily be substituted in products such as fine baked goods: some oils and fats are not suitable because of the taste, and others are potential allergens. Furthermore, other oils and fats that would be suitable for our products are not available in the required quantities. Substitution by oils from sunflowers, soya or rape-seed does not make sense, as the cultivation of the plants requires a much larger surface area. The palm oil plant requires six times less surface area than, for example, soya for the same yield. In the case of soya and rape, the problem of genetically modified seed also needs to be considered.

Many small farmers are dependent on palm oil for their livelihood therefore palm oil is currently indispensable in the supply situation that exists today.

However, for the palm oil that we use, we attend closely to the fact that it is sustainably cultivated. Since 2004 the RSPO (Round Table on Sustainable Palm Oil) has promoted sustainable cultivation in cooperation with the leading palm-oil producers in South-East Asia and companies in the supply chain in the West. Through our membership of the RSPO we are working for this course of action and thus for the sustainable cultivation of palm oil. We have also been a member of the Forum Nachhaltiges Palmöl (FONAP; Forum for Sustainable Palm Oil) since 2014, which aims to ensure that as soon as possible only certified palm oil is used in Germany, Austria and Switzerland.

What kind of palm oil does Bahlsen use?

Bahlsen has been a member of the RSPO since 2010 and in 2012 switched the palm oil used in production from conventional to sustainable palm oil according to the RSPO "mass balance" standard. However, this measure was only a temporary solution for Bahlsen. By the end of 2015 a change-over to the higher grade, segregated, was made for all pure palm fats that are processed directly in our factories. This step made it possible to trace the source of the raw material more effectively. We also make regular visits to Malaysia and Indonesia, the biggest areas for growing palm oil, in order to see for ourselves the situation and developments in the areas of cultivation.

What is RSPO?

The Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) was established in 2004 by WWF. The RSPO brings together interest groups from seven sectors of the palm oil industry: growers, processors, consumer goods manufacturers, retailers, banks and investors, environmental protection organisations as well as social and developmental aid organisations. The task of the global organisation is to ensure the growth and use of sustainable palm oil products through global standards by promoting conservative cultivation methods and limiting environmental damage.

What is the meaning of the UTZ symbol on product packaging?

Since July 2012 Bahlsen has used UTZ-certified cocoa for chocolate-coated products. More than 80% of the cocoa that we use is already UTZ-certified, i.e. is sourced from sustainable cultivation. The UTZ sustainability programme aims at better organisation among small farmers and practical training in the plantations of farmers’ cooperatives.

In our view these activities are the most effective way of achieving greater sustainability in cocoa growing. In collaboration with UTZ Certified we are committed to ensuring that the use of sustainable cocoa is the normal standard as a matter of course. We document this by means of the UTZ label on our packaging. UTZ supports farmers to work more effectively and economically and aims to improve the income of the farmers and their families. Training courses include the topics of management, cultivation methods, environmental management and social conditions of work; once a year, the trained small farmers are audited. The course content also includes productivity improvement, maintaining the soil fertility, renewing the trees, integrated plant protection, waste management, safety measures in case of accidents and prevention of child labour.

Bahlsen is also a founding member of the Forum Nachhaltiger Kakao (Forum for Sustainable Cocoa), a multi-stakeholder initiative whose goal is also the promotion of sustainably produced cocoa for the whole industry.

What is the best way to store Bahlsen products?

In principle we recommend storing our biscuits in a cool, dry place, but not in the refrigerator. After opening, keep the biscuits either in a freezer bag, fastened with an aroma clip, or in an airtight tin.

How can I get advertising material?

Advertising material is usually produced for special campaigns and promotions, and is distributed only in connection with these activities. It is not available to be purchased or ordered.

What should I do if I have a complaint?

Should you be dissatisfied with a Bahlsen product, please contact us using our contact form.

Where does the name “AFRIKA” come from?

The continent of Africa – especially the west coast – is the world’s largest cocoa producer, with a share of almost 60% of overall production. That is why we chose the name AFRIKA for our chocolate wafers.

Do the "ABC" packages contain the same number of letters?

All letters from A to Z are manufactured in equal numbers. However, for technical reasons, it is not possible to guarantee a particular mix ratio. Therefore, when filling the packages, there will be more of some letters and fewer of others.

Why is LEIBNIZ called “LEIBNIZ”?

The company founder Hermann Bahlsen named the LEIBNIZ Cakes that he introduced to the market in 1891 after one of the most famous residents of Hanover, the polymath Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz (1646-1716). In Hermann Bahlsen’s day it was not unusual in Germany to name food products after well-known people (e.g. Bismarckhering, Schillerlocke, Mozartkugel).

Why does the LEIBNIZ Butterkeks have 52 “teeth”?

The LEIBNIZ Cake (later LEIBNIZ Butterkeks) introduced in 1891 by the company founder Hermann Bahlsen had 52 teeth for purely aesthetic reasons: Hermann Bahlsen thought that the biscuits had the ideal appearance with this number of teeth. To this today, only a LEIBNIZ Butterkeks with 52 teeth is genuine.

Why do other LEIBNIZ products have a different number of teeth?

LEIBNIZ Vollkorn, for example, has only 38 teeth. The reason for this is the consistency of the dough, which is somewhat coarser than the dough of a normal Butterkeks. The teeth therefore have to be larger: if there were 52 of them, each individual tooth would be too delicate and would break easily. LEIBNIZ Choco has 46 teeth as the biscuit is a little smaller than a normal Butterkeks, because it is coated with chocolate. However, here too the chocolate has 52 teeth. A LEIBNIZ Mini has exactly half the number of teeth as a “normal“ LEIBNIZ Butterkeks: 26.

Which are the animals in LEIBNIZ ZOO?

There are 17 different animals in a packet of LEIBNIZ ZOO: a rhinoceros, tortoise, sheep, owl, penguin, monkey, squirrel, rabbit, duck, camel, cat, elephant, lion, bear, dog, donkey and horse. The ZOO Bauernhof packets contain 13 different animals: a cow, dog, bull, donkey, hen, goat, pig, duck, cat, horse, sheep, mouse and rabbit.

Why is the mix of different animals in a packet of LEIBNIZ ZOO not always the same?

Production reasons determine the mix of animals in a packet of LEIBNIZ ZOO. The different animals are equally represented on the cutting form. After baking, the biscuits are taken to a container, from which they are filled into the packets. This means that the number of biscuits of each animal contained in the packet is a matter of chance.

Can I order a packet of LEIBNIZ ZOO that only contains one specific animal?

For production reasons it is unfortunately not possible to select only one kind of animal.

How do I get the Butterkeks out of the packet without breaking it?

It is easy to remove a LEIBNIZ Butterkeks from the packet if you completely pull out the white fold after opening the packet with the tear-out strip and then take out the biscuits. In this way it is easy to remove the stack of biscuits. Instructions to this effect can be found on the back of the packet.

Why does the LEIBNIZ lettering remain on the biscuit after baking?

In order to give the lettering its familiar appearance, the dough cutter is given the appropriate shape. This takes into consideration that the dough increases a little in volume during the baking process. The lettering in the dough before it is baked is considerably finer than in the finished biscuit.

I have not found a suitable vacancy. Can I make a speculative application?

First of all, please examine our latest job offers. If none of them is suitable for you, please feel free to make a speculative application.

Who will see my data?

All personal data from your application and all attachments are recorded, processed and used solely for the purposes of the internal evaluation, categorisation and forwarding of your application. Unless you inform us differently, we assume that we may take account of your application for all vacant positions within our company and may pass your application papers to the appropriate persons.

Where can I find information about allergens?

All allergens contained in products are directly identified in the list of ingredients – visually marked by bold print. In addition we make a voluntary declaration of cross-contamination that is unavoidable for technical reasons with these words below the ingredients list: "The following are also processed in the plant: ...." or “May contain traces of: …”.

On individually packaged products, too, at least the allergenic ingredients are given, and details on cross-contamination where appropriate, so that this information is available if the outer packaging has been thrown away.

I am allergic to nuts/peanuts. Do you have products that are free of nuts/peanuts?

On request we will be pleased to send you a list of products that contain no nuts and/or peanuts.

We do not operate a factory that is free from nuts/peanuts. It may therefore happen that products with nuts/peanuts are made on the same production line. Despite the most thorough cleaning and the greatest care, we cannot exclude the possibility that extremely small quantities of nuts/peanuts may be contained in products that do not have nuts/peanuts as ingredients. Attention is drawn to this technically unavoidable cross-contamination with the words: "On the production line the following is also processed: ...." or “May contain traces of: …”. If this wording does not appear, no further allergens are used on the same production line beyond those that are shown in the list of ingredients.

If you send us a message via our contact form at the topic “Products”, you will receive a list of products that do not have nuts or peanuts among their ingredients.

Do you have egg-free products?

At present we unfortunately do not have an egg-free factory. It can therefore happen that we have both products with and also products without egg as an ingredient on the same production line. Despite the most thorough cleaning and the greatest care, we cannot exclude the possibility that extremely small quantities of hen’s egg products could be contained in products that do not have hen’s egg as an ingredient. Attention is drawn to this technically unavoidable cross-contamination with the words: "On the production line the following is also processed: ...." or “May contain traces of: …”. If this wording does not appear, no further allergens are used on the same production line beyond those that are shown in the list of ingredients.

What animal-based ingredients do you use?

To make our brand products, apart from dairy products, honey and egg products, Bahlsen only uses plant-based raw materials. The dairy products that we use, e.g. sweet whey powder, are produced without using animal rennet. All emulsifying agents used by Bahlsen such as monoglyceride and diglyceride from edible fatty acids are made from non-animal components.

Can I see the salt content of each product?

We show on every product at least the following nutritional values per 100g: energy in kcal and kJ, fat, saturated fatty acids, carbohydrates, sugar, protein and salt.

The reference to “sodium” that was previously made on packaging is no longer allowed. Instead of this the salt content must be shown. For this purpose the sodium content, including that which occurs naturally, has to be converted to salt by using a factor 2.5. This is not, however, exclusively salt which is added in that form but also the sodium that is contained in, for example, baking agent.

Does Bahlsen use additives?

In accordance with the Bahlsen quality policy, for many years we have used no preservatives, antioxidants and artificial aromas. Additives are contained only in exceptional cases and to a very limited extent, in cases where this is necessary for technical and quality reasons. The necessity to use them has to be demonstrated in each individual case. Our quality policy applies to all branded products by Bahlsen.

Our quality standards and our care in production oblige us to supply only safe and high-quality products to consumers. The declaration of ingredients complies of course with all German and European legal requirements.