Dirk Röse

Germany’s most modern sub­stra­te fac­to­ry to be built in Papenburg

Klasmann-Deilmann and Schul­te & Bruns invest in future of gro­wing media industry

Klasmann-Deilmann is buil­ding Germany’s most modern sub­stra­te fac­to­ry. In clo­se coope­ra­ti­on with Schul­te & Bruns, high-per­for­mance pro­duc­tion faci­li­ties will be instal­led in the port of Papen­burg from 2025. As ear­ly as 2026, peat, wood fib­re, green com­post and other raw mate­ri­als are to be pro­ces­sed here into gro­wing media for com­mer­cial horticulture.

Foun­ded in 1913, the Klasmann-Deilmann Group is the world’s lea­ding com­pa­ny in the sub­stra­te indus­try. Gro­wing media are of sys­temic impor­t­ance: A good 50% of the pro­ducts are used by the food indus­try for gro­wing vege­ta­bles, let­tuce, soft fruit, herbs and edi­ble mushrooms. In addi­ti­on, the nur­s­e­ry and orna­men­tal plant sec­tors remain major cus­to­mers. „Ger­ma­ny con­ti­nues to be our most important sales mar­ket,” says Moritz Böcking, Mana­ging Direc­tor of Klasmann-Deilmann. „We want to sup­ply our cus­to­mers with high-qua­li­ty gro­wing media in the long term. That is why the invest­ment in a modern fac­to­ry in Papen­burg is also an invest­ment in the future of Ger­man com­mer­cial hor­ti­cul­tu­re. We want to send a strong signal with this now, in the coro­na pandemic.”

In the future, the raw mate­ri­als requi­red will come from all over Euro­pe. The com­pa­ny has peat resour­ces that are har­ve­s­ted in Ger­ma­ny and the Bal­tic Sta­tes in accordance with the RPP stan­dards. It also has several wood fib­re and com­pos­ting plants in Ger­ma­ny and the Nether­lands, as well as inter­na­tio­nal sup­ply con­tracts for coir, per­li­te, clay, bark and fer­ti­li­zer. „In Papen­burg, we will pro­du­ce high-qua­li­ty sub­stra­te mix­tures that meet the cri­te­ria of sus­taina­bi­li­ty and the high qua­li­ty requi­re­ments of our cus­to­mers,” con­firms Moritz Böcking. „The Port of Papen­burg offers the opti­mum con­di­ti­ons for this, becau­se we can bring tog­e­ther flows of goods from dif­fe­rent regi­ons cen­tral­ly here. Papen­burg will not only be home to the most modern fac­to­ry, it will also pro­du­ce the most inno­va­ti­ve substrates. With Schul­te & Bruns, we have a strong part­ner at our side who is firm­ly ancho­red in the indus­try and with whom we have alrea­dy enjoy­ed a long collaboration.”

Bengt Fischer, Mana­ging Direc­tor of the renow­ned ship­ping and logistics com­pa­ny Schul­te & Bruns, foun­ded in Papen­burg in 1882, says in this con­text: „The coope­ra­ti­on bet­ween our two com­pa­nies ensu­res high hand­ling volu­mes for the Port of Papen­burg and basic employ­ment for our fleet in the long term. We are gra­te­ful that the city of Papen­burg, with the help of the sta­te of Lower Sax­o­ny and the district of Ems­land, is com­ple­ting the new lock, which will make the Port of Papen­burg fit for the future and com­pe­ti­ti­ve and thus make our joint, inno­va­ti­ve pro­ject pos­si­ble in the first place.”

Klasmann-Deilmann’s sub­stra­te fac­to­ries in cen­tral Ems­land and on the so-cal­led Küs­ten­ka­nal (coast canal) will con­ti­nue to ope­ra­te in the com­ing years. „Our local resour­ces of peat are suf­fi­ci­ent to be able to pro­du­ce at several loca­ti­ons,” exp­lains Moritz Böcking. „At the same time, it is fore­see­ab­le that the time of peat extrac­tion in Ger­ma­ny is com­ing to an end. We are thin­king in the long term and are alrea­dy crea­ting real pro­spects for our com­pa­ny, for our employees and, abo­ve all, for our cus­to­mers. Papen­burg offers the opti­mum infra­st­ruc­tu­re for this.” With the new fac­to­ry, Klasmann-Deilmann is buil­ding on a suc­cess­ful model in the port of Rot­ter­dam, whe­re the com­pa­ny has been pro­ces­sing raw mate­ri­als and pro­du­cing gro­wing media for more than three deca­des. „We are con­stant­ly expan­ding the site in the Nether­lands,” says Moritz Böcking, „only recent­ly we inves­ted over ten mil­li­on euros the­re. We would like to start a com­pa­ra­ble suc­cess sto­ry in Papenburg.”