Hoenen bakery in Kempen-Tönisberg gets new ATLAS rack ovens

Interview with Thomas Hoenen, Managing Director of Bäckerei Hoenen in Kempen-Tönisberg (family business since 1904, 40 branches)

1. Mr. Hoenen, many thanks for inviting us today to your production plant (Bäckerei Hoenen). There have certainly been a few changes here in the last weeks...

Indeed there have. We have received our new rack ovens. We were provided with an ATLAS oven free-of-charge for testing purposes and during this period our master bakers and I rigorously tested the oven. What was particularly important to us was both the baking quality (it is excellent) and the energy savings we could make in order to be eligible for the State grants...


2. Keyword grants. Has it been worthwhile? Could you reveal to us the sums involved?

Yes, it has been worth it – we received a subsidy of EUR 3,000 for each oven (a total of 6 ATLAS rack ovens). We measured the energy and CO2 savings with a separate gas meter on the test oven and submitted this to the Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin). Our tests concluded that we are consuming 35% less energy. This differs of course with each individual baker depending on capacity utilisation, products and baking programs.

3. What products do you bake in the ATLAS rack oven?

We bake all products in the ATLAS apart from bread and rolls. In our branches we freshly bake our bread rolls on PICCOLO deck ovens. This means that all other products from classic pastries through croissants to plum cakes are baked in the rack oven.

4. Do you actually bake yourself?

Although I am a trained baker, I am no longer baking. Every morning I meet my colleagues for 10 – 15 minutes and we discuss the relevant details such as adjustments to individual baking programs. This is specifically important for our new ovens. The WACHTEL REMOTE monitoring tool gives me access to all the baking programs of the ovens in our branches and now also of the new ovens in production.

5. How many employees do you have in production?

We have 68 employees in production. These include 57 trained bakers and pastry makers, of whom 8 are master bakers and 2 are master confectioners.

6. Did your bakers quickly get to grips with the new ovens? Did your bakers mention any positive or negative aspects?

Our master bakers worked together with the WACHTEL master bakers to continuously further refine and adapt the baking programs to our own requirements. We are 100% happy with the ovens. And the IQ TOUCH control continues to be self-explanatory.

7. And one last question: Why have you worked with WACHTEL for so many years?

We have been closely involved with WACHTEL for decades. My father did business with Mr. Wachtel senior. Our current generation has continued this with Oliver Frey. We appreciate the short processes. By the way we still bake every day on a 20-year old COLUMBUS deck oven and it is precisely due to this good quality that we are continuing our working relationship! My 11-year old daughter was also particularly impressed with the newly designed, super-modern ATLAS.