The History of Berglandmilch

When it was founded, Berglandmilch was an amalgamation of six significant Austrian dairies with 27 production sites in Upper Austria, Lower Austria, Styria, Carinthia and Burgenland.

  • Schärdinger Landmolkerei (Feldkirchen, Geinberg, Münzkirchen, Peuerbach, Ried, Taufkirchen)
  • Linzer Molkerei (Bad Leonfelden,MH Linz, Pregarten)
  • Milchunion Alpenvorland (Baumgartenberg, Königswiesen, Steyr-Garsten)
  • Bäuerliche Milchunion Kärnten (Klagenfurt, St. Veit a. d. Glan, Völkermarkt, Wolfsberg)
  • Molkerei im Mostviertel (Aschbach, Erlauf)
  • Milchverarbeitung Desserta (Feldbach, Fürstenfeld, Güssing, Graz, Hartberg, Leoben, Voitsberg, Weiz)

In the New Year of 1996, the newly founded Berglandmilch group took over the dairy activities of the AMF (Austrian Milk and Meat) as well as the brands belonging to it with a view to safeguarding the position of Austrian dairy farming in the European market.

The following years were marked by tight restructuring and a modernisation programme: of the 27 original sites, 20 were closed or merged. In 2009 Landfrisch dairy joined the Beglandmilch group, followed by Tirol Milch in 2010 and Stainzer Milch in 2011. Berglandmilch currently operates 11 production sites in Austria (Aschbach, Feldkirchen, Garsten, Geinberg, Klagenfurt, Rohrbach, Stainz, Voitsberg, Wels, Wörgl and Alpi Ried).

Today Berglandmilch is the largest dairy manufacturer in Austria. With around 1,500 employees including its subsidiaries, Berglandmilch processes approx. 1.3 billion kg of milk each year under its Schärdinger, Desserta, Tirol Milch, Lattella, Landfrisch, Stainzer, Alpi and Alpiland family brands.

Roughly 350 different fresh products, long-life milks, butters, yoghurts and curd cheeses are produced. The Berglandmilch group numbers some 11,000 suppliers who are also the owners of the concern.

Berglandmilch is currently one of the most important dairies in Central Europe.

The Tradition behind the Schärdinger Trademark

Berglandmilch production dates back to 1900, when a group of innovative farmers in Schärding founded the first "Austrian Central Butter Co-operative" in order to collect and make use of the butter they produced. Less than 10 years after it was first founded, 15 co-operative dairies belonged to the Central Butter Co-operative Selling Association.

The ensuing period of growth and stability was not disrupted by the Great Depression. In 1937, shortly before the outbreak of war, Schärdinger already boasted 34 member co-operative associations and had developed into the largest and most efficient dairy sales organization in Austria. On the occasion of its 40th anniversary, Schärdinger comprised 41 co-operative dairies, 6 cheese-making co-operatives and 40,000 members. In 1952, the butter selling co-operative was renamed the "Schärdinger OÖ Molkereiverband" (the Schärding Upper Austrian Dairy Association). There followed extensive investment activity in the main sites at Schärding, Linz and Vienna, and Schärdinger began to look around for new export markets. In the middle of the 1960s, Schärdinger exceeded the 1 billion Schilling turnover mark and focused on the production and sale of trademarked cheeses and butter. By 1980, turnover already amounted to 4.3 billion Schillings. This growth continued into the 1980s, with Schärdinger extending its central storage depot in Pasching and investing in its Viennese dairy, the Schärdinger Milchhof.

In the course of preparations for EU membership, the oldest marketing co-operative, the "Schärdinger OÖ. Molkereiverband reg.Gen.m.b.H." (Schärdinger Dairy Association Limieted), together with five other dairy associations, became a part of the AMF (Austria Milk and Meat Marketing Co-operation Limited), founded in 1990.

In 1995, the newly founded Berglandmilch took over the AMF's entire dairy industry, including all its trademark rights.