Our history

Top quality and the best taste sensations stemming from tradition since 1838.

It all started almost 180 years ago with a spice mill. Today, Döhler is a global producer, marketer and provider of technology-driven natural ingredients, ingredient systems and integrated solutions for the food and beverage industry. Innovation, trust, quality and sustainability are the values that characterise our company, and that we are proud of.

1838

Technology began its inexorable rise in the 19th Century. In the same year in which Germany’s first steam locomotive was built, Lorenz Döhler founded the original company of the DöhlerGroup – a spice mill – in Erfurt. Spice mixes were the first Döhler products for good taste.

1892

Wilhelm Gemmer takes over management of the company, which has now grown into a considerable industrial business. The Gemmer family will shape the company over generations, right up to the present day. The familiar, renowned name Döhler remains the company name.

1924

Leo Gemmer takes over management of the company and leads it into a phase of expansion, which will include founding two new sites. Döhler becomes a brand manufacturer: its Döhler-Pudding, Backfein and Backstolz products can soon be found in every German home.

1948

Döhler, a significant food provision company in the Eastern section of the divided Germany, is nationalised. The Gemmer family relocates to the West. Frankfurt and Bad Wildungen are the first locations for the restart of production of flavours and baking agents for bakeries and flavours for the confectionery and spirits industry.

1952

A new production segment is added to Döhler’s range: compounds and flavours based on fruit juice for the fast-growing soft drink industry.

1957

The company moves to Darmstadt, where it remains to this day. The around 70 staff generate sales of around DM 6 million p.a. The compounds developed by Döhler for natural, fruit-cloudy soft drinks set quality standards across the sector. More than 6 million litres of orange juice alone are processed every year.

1962

Construction of a modern compound and flavour factory that sets an example for the technical standard of similar production plants at the time. Controlled automatically using punch cards, the factory monitors the production process all the way to the automatic and sterile filling of packaging for shipping.

1973

Leo Gemmer withdraws from the active leadership of the company. A young management team headed by Jörg Gemmer and Dr Jochen Klein takes on responsibility for the company. The new corporate strategy: innovation and expansion.

1979

The takeover of Lucca GmbH in Heilbronn founds a long-term partnership with a global player in the food industry.

1980

Döhler underlines its position in Germany as one of the leading providers for products in the food and beverage industry through the takeover of Olymparom Essenzen, Wallerstein – just one of multiple competitors taken over in recent years.

1982

Döhler takes its first step outside Germany’s borders in 1982 with the acquisition of Belgium company Citrusco N.V. in Belgium, the first foreign production facility.

1987

R&D and production agreement with a global player in the beverage industry and foundation of a long-running partnership.

1988

Döhler celebrates the company’s 150-year anniversary, inviting customers and staff to various events.

1990

As a pioneer of the new markets in Eastern Europe, Döhler opens its first subsidiaries in Russia, Poland and the Czech Republic. Today, the company is represented in all Eastern European and Baltic countries.

1992

Eastern Europe’s first production facility for the production of flavours and extracts is established at Döhler Szilas in Budapest. As part of the globalisation strategy, the Indian subsidiary Döhler Flavorade in Madras is founded to produce and market flavours on the Indian sub-continent.

1995

By acquiring Euro-Citrus N.V., based in Oosterhout, NL, Döhler integrates an internationally-active producer of fruit juice concentrates for fruit juices, nectars and fruit juice beverages – a milestone for the DöhlerGroup on its way to becoming one of the leading providers of citrus and exotic fruits on the European fruit juice concentrate market.

1996

And globalization goes on! By founding the Döhler China production site in Jinan, Döhler bolsters its service for the growing Asian market.

1997

A joint venture is founded with Fischer-Döhler near Sao Paulo, Brazil, one of the world’s leading producers of orange juice concentrates for the production of compounds and flavours for the South and Central American market. Fischer-Döhler has now become a subsidiary DÖHLER AMÉRICA LATINA LTDA.

2001

The takeover of Dinter – based in Neuenkirchen in the "Altes Land" region of Germany – guarantees direct access to domestic fruits such as apples, pears and berries via this competence centre. Today, Döhler Neuenkirchen supplies the beverage industry worldwide with natural concentrates and flavours for fruit juices, fruit splashes and fruit juice beverages.

2002

The extension and expansion work to turn Döhler Oosterhout into the DöhlerGroup’s largest turnover and production site is completed.

2002

Even the appearance of the newly-built flavours, innovation and technology centre in Darmstadt demonstrates the innovative strength of the DöhlerGroup, which is looking to a dynamic future with more than 30 companies and around 1,400 staff in more than 60 countries.

2003

Construction work at Döhler India Private Ltd. is completed. The new factory in Pune, India can begin production.

2004

Staff move into the customer and communication centre, which gives Döhler staff a modern workplace that encourages communication.

2005

Holding in ALKO International B.V., a leading specialist for natural beverage bases made from milk/cream, tea, fruit juice and cereals.

2006

INNOVAL-DÖHLER joint venture in Mexico City, the production and sales centre for the Central American market.

2007

The takeover of Jahncke with its production facilities in Poland and Ukraine in July 2007 is a big step towards a reliable supply of raw materials and a significant presence in Eastern Europe.

2007

A new production and application centre is opened in Shanghai, serving the Chinese and Asian markets.

2008

Another stage of the extension and expansion work at one of Döhler’s production sites in Oosterhout is completed.

2008

Döhler America Latina opens the Centre of Excellence for Citrus in Limeira, Brazil. As a production and application centre, Limeira plays an important role in the markets in South America.

2008

Capacity is increased significantly at the Kozietuly plant in Poland.

2008

Holding in BONJUICE, Schwalmtal in Germany – a modern production and service company for the food and beverage industry.

2009

With the acquisition of Sanchuan Rizhao, a modern producer of apple juice concentrates, Rizhao becomes the DöhlerGroup’s second site in China.

2009

The new distribution and application centre in Dubai opens at the beginning of 2009. Our customers in the Middle East region receive support from Dubai.

2009

DöhlerGroup reinforces its activities in North America with the Döhler-Milne Aseptics joint venture in Prosser (Washington).

2010

ALKO International B.V., a leading specialist for natural beverage bases, becomes part of the DöhlerGroup.

2011

Commissioning of a production facility for cereal and malt extracts in Neuss, Germany.

2011

Commissioning of the new, state-of-the-art flavour plant and a new testing facility in Darmstadt, Germany.

2011

Takeover of a modern plant in Karaman, Turkey, for the production of fruit juice and colour concentrates and purees.

2012

Dedication of the new flavour plant and office building in Pune, India.

2012

Integration of Shanghai KingBee Biotechnology Co. Ltd., a leading producer of liquid and dry malt extracts, into the DöhlerGroup.

2013

Döhler acquires the fruit processing and flavours divisions of Delta Aromatic (DELRO) in Egypt; foundation of Döhler Egypt for the Production of Natural Food & Beverage Ingredients S.A.E., Cairo, Egypt.

2014

Innoval Döhler becomes Döhler Mexico S.A. de C.V., the new hub for Central America, the USA and Canada.

2014

Döhler begins a joint venture with Afriplex. The company is a producer of premium-quality plant extracts and Africa’s leading supplier of natural extracts.

2014

By taking over Beverage House (now Döhler North America) in Cartersville (Georgia), Döhler places a new focus in raw materials processing and the production of high-quality ingredients in the USA.

2015

Döhler acquires a majority share in dry ingredients specialist Molda.

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