Prof. Dr. Ulrike Detmers

Member of the Management Board
Speaker of the Mestemacher Group 

Group Head Management
Social Marketing
Public Affairs

Mestemacher is a producer of bread and baked goods supplying the classic retail grocery trade in Germany and abroad with pre-packaged Vollkornbrot – German-style dark wholegrain bread – and international speciality breads. These products give Mestemacher a presence in a part of the whole bread and baked goods market. The range is aimed at potential consumers looking for speciality breads which are different from the conventional range of pre-packaged breads and baked goods. Mestemacher has been active in Germany for many years with numerous social projects promoting the equality of men and women in society and a work-life balance on the Scandinavian model. These two sides of the same coin work together to strengthen the image of Mestemacher with relevant customer groups and, importantly, provide a boost to the increase in sales and market share.

The history of Mestemacher, the industrial baker of wholegrain and international speciality breads, began in 1871. Master shoemaker Johann Heinrich Mestemacher established a bakery in Gütersloh for his 20 year-old son Wilhelm, a master baker. After more than 35 years as the town baker, in 1910 Wilhelm Mestemacher founded a specialist bakery for pumpernickel. Wilhelm Mestemacher was moved to establish his specialist bakery by the good market prospects for pumpernickel which had become well-known beyond the borders of Westphalia in the 19th century and was now considered a delicacy in well-to-do city households. Wilhelm Mestemacher also expected to pick up further customers from followers of the Lebensreform movement. This movement, established at the end of the 19th century, criticised the negative human consequences of industrialisation and encouraged a return to “natural” lifestyles. This included a wholefood diet. In the 1950s and 60s the company grew to employ 120 people. The specialist German wholegrain breads and pumpernickel are sold abroad as well as in Germany. Mestemacher GmbH has belonged to members of the Detmers family since 1985. Top-level management at the industrial bakery for wholegrain and international speciality breads is represented by Albert Detmers, the author Prof. Dr. Ulrike Detmers and Fritz Detmers. Group turnover was increased between 1985 and 2016 from 3.2 million to around 151 million euros. Today’s successful market profile is the result of a concentration on the clearly defined core competencies of the wholegrain and pumpernickel specialist which have been nurtured and carefully developed over the history of the company. Of central importance for current market success is the harmonisation of product development, company policy and brand messages and communication on all channels beyond the products. This means that market profile, product profile and ethical profile are all closely linked and together create the company’s image and the Mestemacher brand.

The concept was created at the beginning of 2000 to modernise Mestemacher’s conventional brand image. The old design of the POS displays seemed old fashioned and staid. To rejuvenate the whole thing the entire brand profile was given a facelift. The slightly greying “Mestemacher” brand became the young, fresh brand with international flair – “Mestemacher – the lifestyle bakery”.