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Danish Crown Celebrates 10 Years in Oldenburg

by 5m Editor
13 April 2012, at 7:19am

GERMANY - Ten years have passed since the first slaughterhouse workers said “Guten Morgen“ to each other at Danish Crown in Oldenburg.

Danish Crown had rented the factory in northern Germany, where employees were to debone pork fore-ends from the Danish departments.

Danish Crown’s target was deboning 30,000 fore-ends a week in Germany. Today that figure has increased tenfold.

According to Steen Sønnichsen, CEO of Danish Crown in Germany, Oldenburg marked the start of the developments which have shaped Danish Crown in the new millennium.

Mr Sønnichsen said, "Ten years ago, the situation was that we were starting to fall behind internationally. The big markets were becoming fiercely competitive, which meant that we had to change our approach in order to survive in the long term.

"Oldenburg was both the kick-off to and a key element in the process which has made Danish Crown globally competitive."

Safeguarding Danish jobs

Ten years ago, lower wage and production costs and greater flexibility were the reasons for moving parts of production to Germany.

"Even though wage costs are significantly lower in Germany, productivity and product quality are on a par with Denmark. We would never compromise on Danish Crown’s quality," emphasised Mr Sønnichsen.

"Today we operate worldwide. We cannot talk about “Danish workplaces“ versus “German workplaces“. The move to Germany has meant that we have been able to retain jobs in Denmark by safeguarding the group’s earnings," he said.

Proud of DC

Ole Lyngesen has been factory manager at Oldenburg ever since Danish Crown moved into the building. According to him, the German factory is fully integrated with the rest of the Danish Crown group.

"I never meet anyone who feels that Oldenburg is an outpost in the group. I always get the sense that everyone feels immensely proud of being part of Danish Crown. It is a strong brand, and a good and secure workplace for our European employees," said Mr Lyngesen.

Danish Crown in Oldenburg celebrated its 10th anniversary on 12 April 2012. The occasion was marked with a small party at the factory for current and former employees.