It is our profound commitment to ensure that we provide quality to our partners.
Quality is not only in the details, but also in the bigger picture.
Quality means doing the best job possible in selecting casings, ensuring an optimal match between customer requirements and the yield from the raw material.
Quality means doing our best to understand your requirements and to serve you at any given moment.
Quality means doing the best you can when no one else is looking.
Yes, we are proud to be regarded as the best natural casings company in the world.
Yes, we can still do much better. This is our goal. Striving for perfection.
Our passion for the product will create more value for you, our suppliers and our customers. It is our mission to be your preferred choice, to ensure you use Van Hessen as your casings partner. This is what we want to achieve by providing you with the product you want to buy, and by offering you the most reliable partner in the business.
Your feedback about what we can improve is always highly appreciated. Your feedback will be taken seriously.
It will help us to achieve our goals.
CEO Van Hessen
In the meantime, we are building a team for the future. This team is highly motivated to serve you, to understand you, and to do so even more professionally. Our team will show you why we are the market leaders, why we make money for you and what our quality can do for you. Our team will
ensure that we conduct business as it should be done, while treating our product and our stakeholders with the utmost respect.
Thank you for your support, and thank you for your business.
I hope you will enjoy this new edition of our Quality Online Magazine.
CEO Van Hessen
CEO Van Hessen
For Van Hessen, innovation is essential for the long-term success of the company. We are constantly developing new products to complement our existing range in order to retain our leading position as experts in natural casings. Although our focus is naturally on current requirements, we also need to keep an eye on future market developments and consumers’ changing tastes. That’s why our specialists often sit round the table with our customers, partners and suppliers to discuss how best to achieve our mutual business goals. This determination to pay individual attention to your needs is what characterises our tailor-made approach to our business relationships. It also ensures that sausage manufacturers can make their own production processes more efficient. One example of this is the business case below.
The Zwanenberg Food Group is one of Europe’s leading producers and exporters of meat products and canned meats, and exports canned meats to more than a hundred countries all over the world. Van Hessen has supplied natural casings to companies associated with Zwanenberg since 1933. Through our collaboration, we have been involved in making some very popular products, such as Schop liver sausage and the well-known Limco frankfurters that used to be produced in the south of Holland. The factory supplying these was in fact the first manufacturer to make the transition from salted bundles to the easy-fill solution offered by Van Hessen at the start of the 1970s. It was innovations such as these over the years that ensured Van Hessen remained ahead of the competition when it came to new developments.
Innovation is as important to Zwanenberg as it is to Van Hessen. That’s why we started talking to Zwanenberg last summer, listened to what they needed, and were able to contribute to filling their range of frying sausages in a more efficient manner. We did this by providing special fixed lengths of hog casings on Proline tubes, thereby making it possible to offer a continuous flow of filled sausages that was perfectly coordinated with the cooking process, the cutting process and the packing line. This resulted in extremely efficient use of energy and raw materials, and an improved manufacturing process.
Oris Ltd, based in the north-east of England, is one of Van Hessen’s Centres of Excellence worldwide. Oris is very important to the Van Hessen group in both sales and purchase. The company mainly sources the raw materials for its high-quality lamb and hog casings from processing plants throughout the UK and Ireland. Oris is a loyal partner of all of the major sausage producers in the UK but also has a great sales market for custom-made butchery products. For instance, it has developed special equal-fill ‘FAB’ bags, whereby each tube has the same filled weight to enable butchers to accurately calculate their output.
As recently as 10 years ago, Oris had four locations – including a cleaning factory in Northern Ireland – but has now become a leaner and more efficient operation with a production facility, warehouse and head office at the same Sunderland site. The company has a small but very loyal dedicated production team, most of whom have worked for Oris for a long time. Its Operations Manager Shaun Welsh recently celebrated 25 years’ service with Oris and is a big reason why his team have pride in everything they do. You can see this every time you step into the warehouse: everything is orderly, clean and in its place. This was confirmed in March this year when Oris achieved an ‘A’ grade BRC with zero non-conformances, a Van Hessen Group record.
You can read more profiles of our Centres of Excellence
in further editions of this magazine.
General Manager Tony Greaves explains how Oris works closely with slaughterhouses by building up trust. “We do what we say and say what we do. We spend a lot of time on training and product improvement. For instance, we give regular feedback on product quality and length. We encourage and reward good performance and keep our slaughterhouses informed about the market and what we expect in the future. We treat them fairly with pricing as we want long-term suppliers and if they don’t make money today, they won’t be here tomorrow.”
Oris achieved a significant growth in volume last year in both sales and purchase terms, and Tony expects this to continue. “Apart from supplying the best casings on the market, the main difference between us and the competition is that we offer a technical sales service which aims to provide our customers with bottom-line savings. We thrive on spending time examining our customers’ production methods as we want our technical expertise to make a real difference to them.”
He concludes, “It’s hard to predict the future in casings but we have ambitious plans for growth and have a team with the passion to deliver. The future is bright for the business! And with our focus and dedication to quality, food safety and cost savings, why would you buy from anyone else?”
You can read more profiles of our Centres of Excellence
in further editions of this magazine.
In this issue, we feature Marco Verhagen who is Human Resources Director
since January 2012.
|As HR Director, can you describe an average day at work?|
|How important is new talent for Van Hessen
and what do you do to acquire it?
|How does Van Hessen keep its staff motivated?|
|What kind of career path can Van Hessen offer people?|
|What are your ambitions for developing
Van Hessen’s HR policies in the future?
|Which factor do you feel has contributed most
to Van Hessen’s success?
In this box, you can ask a question yourself. This will be answered via e-mail as soon as possible, and the answer will be published in the next issue of our digital corporate magazine.
In the next issue, we will be speaking to people from various departments including Research & Development, Innovation, and Supply Chain Management.
At Van Hessen, we believe in the power of partnership. And with our Swedish customer Lindvalls, we’ve got a great partnership that currently produces about 1 million sausages each week.
Just like Van Hessen, Lindvalls is a company that’s been around for a long time. Established in 1925, it shares our commitment to quality - not just in product terms, but also in terms of business relationships. We each believe in producing the
highest-quality products with passion and commitment, which is why Van Hessen has been Lindvalls’ supplier of natural casings for more than 20 years.
Our partnership is characterised by mutual trust and respect, reinforced by clear, open communication. For instance, we at Van Hessen regularly share information about the global market situation with our counterparts at Lindvalls. We freely discuss issues such as raw materials, prices, availability, product developments and so forth. In turn, the people we deal with at Lindvalls let us know where fresh opportunities may lie. This leads to a ‘win-win’ situation for us both.
Stefan Svensson, Lindvalls’ Product Manager, confirms this. “We know that we can rely on Van Hessen’s ability to deliver, and they don’t let us down. They’re there for us on time and with a consistent product of the highest quality. Because we can count on receiving the same quality of natural casings every day, it’s easy for us to calculate the expected maximum output. This means we can ensure consistency and efficiency in our own manufacturing processes, and we can achieve the highest yield and best results. The bottom line? Working with Van Hessen is good for our bottom line.”
Van Hessen also takes service, especially after-sales service, very seriously. Our specialists are always ready to work with Lindvalls’ own experts to tackle any challenges with regard to products or processes. Together, we ensure that Lindvalls’ customers can always rely on great sausages with a consistent appearance, bite and taste.
Over the years, our close working relationship with Lindvalls has developed into more than friendship: as far as we’re concerned, they’ve become part of the ‘Van Hessen family’.
If we look at meat consumption patterns, it’s clear that consumers in many countries are becoming more interested in high-quality ingredients and more unusual or different varieties of sausages. For example, increasing affluence in BRIC countries is leading to a middle class who can afford to shop for quality rather than just quantity. The enormous recent growth in the number of these new consumers is creating a lot of demand for more visually and nutritionally attractive sausage products.
In more developed western markets, the desire to go further upmarket is encouraging shoppers to explore fancier versions of products - such as sausages - that have always been a basic part of their shopping basket. Also, recent food scandals in many countries have made consumers more wary of the risks involved in producing massive quantities of low-quality meat. More people are prepared to pay for added value:
high-quality food that’s a little out of the ordinary in terms of packaging, contents or image - and preferably all three. Farmers’ markets and other ‘back to nature’ outlets do cater to these consumers, but aren’t always convenient to reach.
However, sausage manufacturers and retailers can actually supply and communicate this added value fairly easily by developing specially crafted products - on an industrial scale. Naturally, casings have an important role to play. By using the correct type of casings, it's proving pretty easy to put more into a sausage than the basic taste and experience that was all that was on offer for many years. There are lots of different types of sausage fillings and packaging options that can quickly be introduced to the mass market, and there’s a large demand for them. After all, consumers still generally prefer to be able to buy a dozen interesting types of sausage at their local supermarket, rather than having to travel further afield.
As sausages containing a variety of added ingredients (e.g. leek and apple) can really appeal to the ‘new’ consumer, it’s of course crucial to use the right casings. Van Hessen has generations of experience in supplying the appropriate natural casings to fulfil individual requirements. And with the price premium that high-quality foods command, adapting traditional sausages to suit new consumers’ tastes can prove a profitable and sustainable move for all its partners in the meat industry too.
is a form of smoke-cured pork sausage seasoned with garlic and paprika that’s eaten in Portuguese-speaking countries. The name Calabresa comes from the Calabria region in south-eastern Italy, which is the origin of this sausage. It can be served as a cold cut appetizer, or it can be grilled, or sautéed with vegetables for pasta. Linguiça calabresa, like many other sausages, is generally served as part of a heavy meal, typically accompanied by rice, beans, and other pork products – such as Feijoada.
For this traditional sausage, our customers use American or European hog casings. These casings are freshly cleaned on site in the slaughterhouses under the supervision of our own management. During the cleaning process, our company works closely together with the slaughterhouse to maximize the yield and quality for all stakeholders. Preserved in salt, the cleaned hog casings are shipped to our processing facility where the casings are selected by hand with the utmost care, resulting in the highest-quality standardised natural casing. Prepared according to the desired specifications – such as on Proline tubes or Net-packs – we distribute these custom-made natural casings to our valued customers.
Our motto is: “We sell you the product you want to buy”!
In a medium-sized pot, gently fry the beans, 2 tbsp of oil, the salt, garlic, onions and bay leaves for 15 minutes and set aside.
Meanwhile, pan-fry the beef at a low to medium temperature, along with the pork loin and bacon, with salt and garlic to taste. After the meat has softened, add all of the sausage. Add a small amount of water to help everything cook, but allow excess water to steam away, leaving a stew and not a soup. Approximately 15-20 minutes’ cooking should be enough.
Once the meat is cooked and the water reduced, it’s now time to put the meat into the pot containing the beans. Do this while slowly heating the and stirring the contents (for at least 10-15 minutes. This allows the flavours of the vegetables and meats to mingle).
Serve hot, along with white rice, collard greens, roasted cassava and freshly sliced oranges on the side.