bofrost* – European frozen foods market leader from the Niederrhein Region
The idea is simple but ingenious. All products are shock-frozen on site immediately after being harvested and kept in a closed cold chain until delivered to home freezers. Even if bofrost* has never jumped on the organic bandwagon, the deep freeze group from Straelen wants to ensure the highest quality standards at all times. It focuses on the best farming and catching areas. The broccoli, for example, comes from Ecuador, since there are practically no harmful insects on the plateau, so no pesticides are needed. bofrost’s* famous peas come from Sweden. Here the light of long, summer Nordic days together with the cool, damp sea climate provide the perfect conditions for the peas to grow. Thanks to the special, gentle shock-freezing process, all the important vitamins, nutrients and freshness are preserved. Spinach loses 60 percent of its nutrients and vitamins very soon after harvesting, but if frozen immediately, it keeps all its valuable contents. Top quality combined with a closed cool chain and first-class service remain the key ingredients of the company’s success today, especially since the large retail chains and even the discount supermarkets began offering deep-frozen products. The cool chain is broken when the products are removed from the freezer in the supermarket. Only the Direct Service, with which the products are delivered to homes in special vehicles, quasi moving freezers, guarantees top quality. The fish is frozen immediately after being caught, the meat right after being slaughtered, the fruit and vegetables after harvesting – and, after gently thawing in the kitchen, they are as fresh as on the first day.
Something that we now take for granted was a sensation in the beginning. The company’s founder Josef H. Boquoi came up with the idea back in 1966 when he was driving through the country with ice-cream. Boquoi, who was born in 1934 in Issum, learnt the retail business from the bottom up. His parents already had a shop in the Cologne region. During the war his father drove from farm to farm. Josef Boquoi himself had learned the coffee-roasting business. During his tours across the region with ice-cream many farmers paid with natural produce, which Boquoi stored in his cold storage – and which therefore remained fresh. This was the key experience for this subsequent frozen foods company. Deep-frozen fish fingers and cream spinach were already launched on the market in Germany in 1957. The triumphant success of refrigerators and freezers in the land of the economic miracle created the domestic foundations for the unique success story of bofrost*, the abbreviated form of Boquoi-Frost. Is there a market for top-quality conserved groceries? The market leader can still answer this question with a resounding ‘yes’.
Thanks to a clever municipal business location policy, bofrost* moved from Issum to Straelen, and there is still enough space available there for further expansion today. But the groceries that bofrost* stores and packages in its cold storage warehouses don’t just come from the fields and greenhouses in the region: they now come from all round the world. Rotterdam is just a stone’s throw away from Straelen. To this day bofrost* is still expanding in Germany, and the market leader supplies almost three million households in Germany. Two catalogues – each spring and autumn – with over 400 products inform the customers about the product range and new offers. bofrost has also been a pioneer in the niche market for gluten and lactose-free deep-frozen foods for a long time. So far the company has expanded to twelve European countries. The Italian subsidiary, founded in 1987, is the largest among them.
9,804 employees work for bofrost* across Europe; 6,290 of them in Germany. Most of them are drivers on permanent contracts whose philosophy of customer loyalty is something special. To be precise, there are 5,081 sales vehicles driving to 4.1 million customer households for bofrost* in Europe every day – in Germany alone it is 2.7 million households. There are about 600 employees in the headquarters in Straelen alone, from warehouse staff to test chefs. The company’s turnover is 1.205 billion euros, 65 percent of which is generated in Germany (770 million euros). Today Michael Boquoi, son of the company founder, and Dr. Thomas Stoffmehl are in charge of the company. And despite all the commercial success, the company remains committed to the local region, its responsibility for the environment and its social responsibility. A new position has just been created in the company for sustainability. bofrost* has also been a firm partner of “Ein Herz für Kinder e.V.” for five years and donated one million to this children’s aid organization last year alone.
bofrost* Dienstleistungs GmbH & Co. KG
An der Ölmühle 6
Tel.: 02834 707-0
Fax.: 02834 707-594
As at: April 2012