When forty years ago Joseph Wilhelm and his former wife Jennifer Vermeulen started to mix muesli in their bathtub to bring healthy food products to the German market, they hardly could have imagined becoming one of the key producers and distributors of organic food in the world. It was 1972 when RAPUNZEL, named after a 19th century fairy tale by the Brothers Grimm, was born. A „hippie“ dream of living the organic life soon turned into a small specialty store.
Photo: Items from Rapunzel's first store now adorn the museum next to the production plant
Photo: Rapunzel's bus
From a vision to produce organically cultivated muesli, nutty spreads, bread, fruit and vegetable, RAPUNZEL grew into a company with 300 full-time employees operating from a small German town Legau (Bavaria). Today, RAPUNZEL markets some 12,000 tons of organic food across the world presented in more than 450 certified products.
Yet the organic pioneer has not stopped there. Joseph Wilhelm is an untiring fair trade promoter and an active supporter of organic agriculture beyond Germany and Europe. In cooperation with the International Federation of Organic Agriculture (IFOAM), he has been cherrishing the effort of other pro-Earth and socially conscious activists with One World Award (OWA), which recognizes outstanding engagement and achievements in environment protection and fair livelihoods. Sixfinalists were awarded during this year's gala celebration with 800 German and international guests that are themselves engaged in sustainability, environmental protection or organic farming.
The show was followed by a 2-day festival to celebrate RAPUNZEL'S work and this year especially their 40th anniversary. Served food was strictly vegan to have visitors reflect on the environmental impact of eating habits. Organics with love remains the core belief of the company.
Photo: Representatives of winning projects posing for a photo
Happy birthday RAPUNZEL and congratulations to the winners!
Photo: Hana Hrstkova, Maike Wilhelm (as Rapunzel) and the former Alfalfa's CEO Mark Retzloff enjoying Rapunzel's festival