Düpmann LLC & Co. has been active in the convenience business since the early 1970s. It began with peeled potatoes and onions, and now the company processes a wide range of vegetables. We talked to quality manager Sylvia Düpmann about the move to the new location, this year's circumstances and the future of the company.
Since 2018 the company has been based in Borgholzhausen, since then the production has moved step by step from the old location in Marienfeld. This autumn, the move is complete and only the washing of the crates will take place at the old location: "Nevertheless, the old site is not simply empty. If we seasonally exhaust the capacity of our area in Borgholzhausen, we can process additional quantities at the other location. The warehouse is also still in use and we are also considering renting out both warehouse and production halls in the future."
The new location is favourably situated: "We are located directly on the A33 motorway, which was a decisive factor in purchasing the land. The plant there is 5000m² and we currently process and market 14,000 tons of vegetables per year". The Düpmann's "colorful vegetable range" includes carrots, garlic, leeks and a selection of fruit vegetables and mushrooms - but the main focus is on onions."
The onions are sourced from contract farmers in the region, an aspect that is becoming increasingly important, notes Sylvia Düpmann: "It is not unusual for onions to be peeled or cut for further processing in Poland, for example, in order to save costs. Since regionality and sustainability are becoming an increasingly important factor in the trade, we can draw on the full potential of our contract growers here. We have been working with the farmers for many years and have great respect for their work."
The heat and drought of recent years has caused many vegetable producers in Germany to suffer: "The farmers had to work hard. An enormous amount of planning and work goes into an avoidably simple product like the onion. Thanks to large investments in irrigation, we can now process more and more German onions all year round. I don't think many people are aware of the amount of work involved".
The other vegetables, processed by Düpmann LLC & Co., is also sourced from Europe: "We have regular suppliers from the Netherlands and Spain. We have a good relationship of trust with our suppliers."
Düpmann's main customers, apart from the catering trade, are mainly processors from the delicatessen and convenience sector. "The demand for convenience in itself, and also the product range, has naturally grown significantly since the 70s. We are always open to new ideas and see ourselves as advisors and partners to our customers in order to be able to implement their wishes."
Even though the company only supplies the hospitality industry trade to a lesser extent, the Coronavirus has an effect on sales: "This year is definitely slower. Nevertheless, we are fortunately able to keep the normal daily business running."
Some of the 80 employees are working from home, but the company relies on a safe hygiene concept: "We notice that our employees take the virus very seriously and are adhering to the safety regulations very well. The lockdown in spring had been very stressful for everyone, but now we are seeing more calm and confidence in the measures. Nevertheless, I don't think there will be any easing of the situation before the end of December," Düpmann concludes.