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50 years of love for organic food

Rapunzel over the decades

Rapunzel is often considered an organic pioneer. Yet, what exactly does it take to be a true pioneer? By definition, pioneers are people who do what must be done at that very moment, and who do it with courage, conviction and without fear of failure. They persevere, even if they may initially be alone on their way.

No headwinds and a lack of support can hold pioneers back. They do not act for their own short-term benefit, but for the benefit of all. Against this backdrop, the "organic pioneer" term is quite appropriate for Rapunzel. On the occasion of our 50th birthday, we would like to invite you to join us on a journey through the various decades of our pioneering work.
Joseph Wilhelm and Jennifer Vermeulen founded Rapunzel as a self-sufficient community on a farm, with a small organic food shop, in Augsburg, Bavaria in 1974 – that much is well known. But what you may not have known:

At the time, Rapunzel could have been what we would call a “start-up” today.

With little money but a great deal of conviction, Joseph and Jennifer had to convince lenders and banks of their idea. However, their enthusiasm for wholesome nutrition ultimately won them over, and they were able to start producing muesli as their first home-made product. This was also the start of the first nutritional revolution. Because, at that time, white flour rolls and sugary jams used to be the breakfast standard.

Then and now



Anniversary products
The wild 70's


"The Mueslis" – that's how the first generation of Rapunzels were baptised. The idea was that they were people with long hair, home-knitted sheep's wool jerseys and Birkenstock sandals. In reality, however, the cause of the young company with the fabulous name was important for society:

The methods deployed in the young field of organic farming are the logical step towards avoiding environmental pollution, pollutants and residues in food, in addition to preserving an intact natural environment.

But how can farmers be convinced to go organic? The Rapunzels quickly realised the approach by means of which they could make their contribution to the health and well-being of their fellow human beings:

A reliable purchase guarantee for organic products increases sales and boosts consumption in the long term – a recipe for success, despite the initial risk.

And today? The Rapunzel fairytale is still not over: The small self-sufficient community, with a 20-square-metre health food shop, is now one of the leading organic producers in Europe. Wood-fired ovens and roasting drums over the fire have given way to modern production and packaging facilities. However, the care and quality in the production process has remained the same. And organic? We still do it out of love. Simply magical.
Rapunzel is and remains 100 per cent family-owned: After Joseph Wilhelm and Jennifer Vermeulen, the next generation is assuming responsibility. Leonhard Wilhelm, Rosalie Dorn and Seraphine Wilhelm continue the values that characterise Rapunzel.


How do you become known beyond the borders of the Allgäu in a short time? By leaving your footprint in history. As one of the first companies in the young organic farming movement, Rapunzel was able to play an active role in shaping it. This included the product range, content and values as well as the trade and industry structures:

Rapunzel set standards with its own, externally-certified, fair trade programme, the founding of a Turkish subsidiary and political campaigns.

The way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. And this becomes even better if you can make chocolate dreams come true. Thanks to the raw materials from the small farmers' El Ceibo cooperative, Rapunzel achieves a sweet sensation: the world's first organic chocolate. Ever since, the company has revealed its sweet side: SAMBA, bionella or the Milch Michl – there is something for every taste. The sweet secret: Since 1987, Rapunzel has consistently expanded its wealth of experience, creating new flavours and establishing fair trade relationships.
Firmly anchored in the Allgäu region, more than 500 employees work together to give their best: Currently, there are more than 550 Rapunzel products in Europe and worldwide. More than half of them are produced at the headquarters in Legau. Together with HAND IN HAND trading partners and its own logistics centre in Bad Grönenbach, Rapunzel is achieving great things. The result: quality you can taste.
Anyone can have good intentions. Rapunzel has them externally certified. For comprehensive transparency, you will find various seals and certifications on Rapunzel products, regardless of whether for organic quality, fair trade and social standards, environmental standards or standards for food production and safety.


For Rapunzel, the concept of organic does not end with food. The company supports environmental protection and biodiversity with campaigns against genetic engineering or agricultural poisons as well as through the promotion of organic farming and organic seed cultivation. Rapunzel strengthens marginalised or disadvantaged groups in Africa, Asia and Latin America, as well as at its own company location.

What drives Rapunzel: We only have one world and have to share its space and resources fairly.

It is important to understand the impact of organic farming and its effects. Since 2022, Rapunzel Welt has been an interactive museum that aims to create enthusiasm through knowledge. This is for all people who wish to improve the world and encourage others. A matter of the heart.

Rapunzel's message: Only if everyone involved in the production chain of a product is doing well can food be produced that is good for everyone.
Rapunzel should and will always remain a project. Within the meaning that new and young people continue to carry on the company's core values. By remaining open to new ideas, Rapunzel can continue producing good organic food for society in the future. Because, ultimately, there is only one world, which has to remain worth living in for future generations.
The RAPUNZEL One World Organic Foundation was created through a Rapunzel initiative. It fosters organic agriculture, socio-cultural commitment and health, both in Germany and across the globe.

Rapunzel One World Festival

Save the Date: On 21.09. and 22.09.2024 we will be celebrating together.

Rapunzel hosted its first festival in 1986. Back then, it was the opening party for the in-house exhibition. This year, guests, suppliers and partners from both near and far will be coming together in Legau for the fourteenth time. You can expect a merchant mile, tasting stands, a bargain market, a children's programme and lots of culture.

Thank you to the many wonderful people who value high-quality organic food! Who, like us, would like to eat healthily and contribute to a fair world. This festival is for you!

The Rapunzel anniversary products

Limited Edition

This year, we have a variety of anniversary promotions in store for you. Our anniversary products, for example, return old, tried-and-tested favourites back onto the shelves for a short time. Milch Marie will be keeping Milch Michl company for a short time. Needless to say, with Prosecco Vino, we have the perfect companion to toast half a century of organic love.
Or you can give the exotic flavour of almond tonka cream a try.

And, should you be feeling peckish between meals, our anniversary mix also includes peanuts and both Bircher and Original Muesli. Take a look at our webshop to see which product we are currently celebrating our anniversary with and be sure to hurry: The promotions only run for a short time.

50 years "Organics with love" - the photo gallery

In the 1970s not only Rapunzel was founded but many companions from the organic industry started to market their first organic products at that time. They all had a common goal: saying "no" to industrialized foods, towards (and back) to living foods. At first, some produced only for their own subsistence, but the demand for healthy, untreated and naturally produced foods grew more and more  ...

Fair trade and organic farming are central for Rapunzel

Foreign Distributors

We distribute our products around the world - our local partners are happy to help you.

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