Founded 1680
The Netherlands

BAVARIA – a global brewer with roots in local ground

Bavaria brewery is one of the oldest family businesses in the Netherlands. It has approximately 1,000 members of staff, at home and abroad. Managed by the Swinkels family, the Bavaria brewery in the south of the country has been brewing beer according to a unique family recipe for seven generations now. This has enabled them to safeguard the best quality since 1719. Pure ingredients form the basis for quality, and that is why Bavaria is brewed from naturally pure mineral water from its own wells, while the company malts its own barley.

Seven generations of brewing industry

As an independent family business Bavaria still has a special position in the international beer market. The Swinkels family has run the business for seven generations. Entrepreneurship runs in the family blood. Where Johannes Swinkels sold ten barrels of beer in 1884, the brothers Jan, Piet and Frans had expanded the business to over 40,000 hectolitres in 1947. In 1981 the sixth generation achieved the 1 million hectolitre milestone and the entrepreneurial spirit of the seventh generation ensures that now Bavaria exports 6 million hectolitres of beer to over 120 countries.

Innovation through the years

Where increasingly small scale breweries have been closing their doors, the Swinkels family has remained successful through the years by consistently anticipating changes in the market. As originator of the sole genuinely zero alcohol beer Bavaria has built a strong position in the Netherlands as well as in other parts of the world. In 1978 Bavaria exported the first zero alcohol beer to the Middle East and today its unique brewing method helps Bavaria to maintaining a top position in the zero alcohol segment in several markets.

Investing in sustainable business processes

As the Swinkels family sees it, each generation has the brewery on loan from the next generation. Continuity is the key driver. Bavaria’s motivator is to hand over the business to the children and grand children in optimum condition. This requires innovative power and means investing in sustainable business processes, in assets that the next generations can build on. Bavaria is the world’s first brewery to operate under ISO 26.000 standards assuring a completely sustainable overall operation in terms of water consumption, energy, chain management and man & environment.