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Douwe Egberts

Douwe Egberts' long and rich history started over 260 years ago, in a small village in Friesland. Egbert Douwes and his wife Akke Thysses founded Douwe Egberts in 1753. This marked the beginning of Douwe Egberts as it exists today. Egbert and Akke started selling products that 'add to the pleasures of daily existence'. They began selling coffee, tea and tobacco in their small shop, 'De Witte Os' (literally 'The White Ox'), in Joure, the Netherlands.

On January 10th, 1755 Egbert Douwes and Akke Thijsses had a son. They named him Douwe Egberts. The latter married Ymke Jacobs in 1775. Around 1780 Douwe Egberts joined his parents' business. And business was good. Originally Egbert Douwes only sold to the local villagers. However, when his son, Douwe Egberts, joined the business around 1780, he built up a reputation regionally by supplying shop owners elsewhere, thereby spreading the Douwe Egberts brand around the country. Gradually, Douwe and his descendants built a company that grew to become the Dutch market leader for its core products, coffee and tea.

During the French occupation in the early 19th century, everyone had to pick a surname. In 1812 the Douwe Egberts family chose De Jong as their family name. The company, however, became well-known as Douwe Egberts instead of Egbert Douwes. It is probably because Douwe Egberts ensured sales expansion at the regional level. His father remained dedicated to the shop in Joure which means he was only locally known.

In 1919 Douwe Egberts opened the DE headquarters, and also the very first distillery on Catharijnekade in the city of Utrecht. Raw coffee bags were carried to the distillery using horse and carriage. In 1925 the DE seal appeared for the first time on a tobacco packaging. Since then it has changed many times. Today the famous DE seal is easily recognized and guarantees supreme quality.

In 1937 Pickwick was introduced to the people. The name is inspired by Charles Dickens' Pickwick Papers. In 1953 Douwe Egberts celebrated its 200th anniversary, embracing the designation Royal. In 1954 Douwe Egberts introduced Moccona instant coffee in 50 gram jars. It was a successful launching and by the year 1975, 70% of Dutch households were using instant coffee every now and then.

In 1960 Douwe Egberts took responsibility for more than half the national coffee and tobacco export. Douwe Egbert Nederland (1968) became the operating company dedicated to the marketing and selling of tea and coffee in the Netherlands. The latter half of the 1900s were spent expanding the Douwe Egbert product range and included the acquisition of such companies as the U.S. based Sara Lee food corporation and the German Jacobs coffee.

The introduction of Douwe Egberts SENSEO® in 2001 marked a new era for those in love with coffee. Now it was possible to prepare a single cup of coffee and even select your favourite coffee pad. In 2003 Douwe Egberts celebrated its 250th anniversary with a lot of special activities. In 2007 the core Instants range was updated from the Continental Roasts to the Pure Range, which included four blends Pure Gold, Pure Indulgence, Pure Smooth and Decaffeinated. In 2011 the international coffee and tea activities were disconnected from Sara Lee. In June 2012 the name D.E. MASTER BLENDERS 1753 was adopted.

Douwe Egberts continues to update and improve its products to this day. For example, in 2013 a range of six new ground varieties offers coffee lovers a selection of flavor notes and strengths to meet the varying taste profiles of their international customer base. D.E. Master Blenders remains a global coffee & tea company, serving consumers in more than 100 countries through iconic brands including: Jacobs, Tassimo, Moccona, Senseo, L’OR, Douwe Egberts, Kenco, Pilao & Gevalia. Today Douwe Egberts is one of the top 3 largest coffee roasters in the world.