Kirsten Iversen, the owner of Dansk Hjemmeproduktion (Danish Home Production) has recently experienced great success in Denmark with her tools and accessories for home making of cheese products.
Her ambitions now, however, are beginning to expand beyond the home market. The world-wide trend dictates ?natural? and the time has come for Mrs. Iversen to take her business beyond Denmark?s borders, embarking on a project, which Chr. Hansen, a major supplier of rennet to Dansk Hjemmeproduktion from the very onset, has chosen to endorse.
The time as well as current culinary trends are on Kirsten Iversen's side. Kirsten's company, Dansk Hjemmeproduktion ApS has been having tremendous success in Denmark providing customers with "do-it-yourself" kits of supplies and accessories for manufacture of cheeses and cheese-related products, all in the comfort of one's own home.
Growing Focus on Health
"With supermarkets being packed with all sorts of food products, it is now possible to buy almost anything. At the same time, perhaps as a counteraction, there is correspondingly growing focus on health and increasing awareness as to what we put in our mouths and what ingredients the food we eat contains. The absolutely safest way to control what we consume is to make our own food. In other words, slow-food in its purest form has become increasingly trendy, which in turn means that I am experiencing an enormous surge of demand for my products domestically as well as abroad," says Kirsten Iversen.
To Kirsten, however, home food production is much more than just a mere fad; to her it is a living. In 1985 Kirsten founded Dansk Hjemmeproduktion at the family?s country estate on the Danish island of Fyn, where the idyllic surroundings have remained the company's base location since the get-go. From there Kirsten sells cheese-making kits that include machinery, utensils and other accessories, which enable people to produce a wide variety of cheeses such as feta, mould cheese and table cheese ? all in the comfort of their own kitchens. Educational institutions also like to buy the Dansk Hjemmeproduktion cheese-making kits for their school project work.
From the very beginning Chr. Hansen has maintained a close relationship with Kirsten, being a consistent source of rennet for the ongoing production of her home cheesery equipment, which is widely sold in Denmark, also to the private customer sector.
Ambitions with growing pains
Originally Dansk Hjemmeproduktion started when Kirsten wanted to make her own cheese using milk from her family's goats. She found a way to make her own home-made cheese and subsequently decided to put in production molds and methods that she eventually started selling to the public. Today, 21 years later, her company is doing so well that it was necessary to move her daily business operations to an addition to the original building. And her ambitions just keep on growing...
Recently Kirsten received an offer to have her home-cheese making equipment marketed in an Austrian catalogue. If this initiative proves to be a success, she will have established herself for real in the export markets. She has been in the business long enough to know that there are no products competitive to hers on the market ? yet. That is why Kirsten is determined to embark on expanding her business now.
"It's obvious, however, that making an extensive international push is rather difficult for such a small one-woman operation like mine especially when it comes to funding. Many things need to be translated and one must think in terms of global solutions. Thus, I am very pleased that Chr. Hansen is willing to help me with the financial aspects, which means that I can now afford to do this the right way," says Kirsten.
"Throughout the years I have been in close contact with Chr. Hansen. Even though I am not exactly one of their largest clients, I have always been greeted with warmth and a positive attitude towards the challenges I have met on the way. Chr. Hansen has always been at my side with a piece of good advice, willing to try out things even on a small scale. And again we are on our way to try out new things ? although this time on a somewhat higher level."
Chr. Hansen is a global bioscience company that develops natural ingredient solutions for the food, nutritional, pharmaceutical and agricultural industries. The products include cultures, enzymes, probiotics and natural colors, and all solutions are based on strong research and development competencies coupled with significant technology investments. Revenue in the 2013/14 financial year was EUR 756 million. The company holds a leading market position in all its divisions: Cultures & Enzymes, Health & Nutrition and Natural Colors. It has more than 2,500 dedicated employees in over 30 countries and main production facilities in Denmark, France, USA and Germany. Chr. Hansen was founded in 1874 and is listed on NASDAQ OMX Copenhagen.