Scroll Top
bbi-2020-03-Corona and its impacts (DIOSNA excerpt)
Coronavirus microscopic view. Floating influenza virus cells. Dangerous asian ncov corona virus, SARS pandemic risk concept. 3d rendering illustration

Everything that is currently doing the rounds about estimates of the coronavirus pandemic’s impacts is still derived from past global crises, and is not very specific or relates only to individual sectors. baking+biscuit
asked around and heard assessments of the crisis by suppliers to the industry, and how they are responding to it.

Signals from the baking sector differ as much as the structure of the businesses themselves. News reports day after day carried photos showing empty bread shelves. While trade suppliers activated all their spare production capacities, the situation among artisans, catering and chain stores looked quite different.

By using to-go concepts and deliveries, companies with a large proportion of catering were forced to attempt almost overnight to prevent the turnover collapse becoming life-threatening. Moreover, all the artisans suffered from consumers reducing their shopping trips and visiting as few businesses as possible, which tended to favor the food retail and prepacked goods on bread shelves.

“Please maintain social distancing” is the order of the day in shops. All those that have them use drive-in counters. In double-quick time, others open a pop-up drive-in at a former filling station. Opportunities to cushion losses are also available on the web. It’s the age of online stores and delivery services.

How bakery machine constructors are dealing with the crisis
How is the coronavirus crisis affecting your company?

Meaningful forecasts are currently almost impossible due to the dynamic nature of developments. Like any manufacturing company in Germany, we also notice uncertainty among our customers and employees. We take very seriously our responsibility as one of the baking industry’s most important partners. Since we have depended on “Made in Germany” for more than 135 years, we are largely independent here. However, even we are beginning to notice transport options and rising delivery costs. Happily, we can continue our day-to-day operations in the production area almost without restriction.
Because we and our high-quality mixers and systems for baked products serve a market representing one of the most important staple foods, we even see a rise in industrially manufactured and packed products in this crisis. Our task now is to ensure that we also do everything in our power to ensure this demand is met. Whether we succeed in doing that in the short and medium term depends on many factors.

Are there any impacts on supplies and installations?

Our customers can depend on us 100% here, because the organization of our in-house workshops is optimum. Orders already confirmed will, of course, also be processed and delivered. We will inform our customers promptly if delays due to illness or suppliers occur here. Reliable processes to keep the level of information up to date have been developed for this purpose. Insofar as these production chains function, we will also be able to deliver on time in the future as well. Of course, limitations arise due to restrictions on the freedom to travel. This affects mainly our experts who work at customers’ premises, i.e. sales staff, technical installers, technologists, programmers and commissioning staff. However, the DIOSNA Group has a large network of competent sales/marketing and service staff that allows us to access the respective specialist personnel on the spot, and to offer a well-structured customer service organization.

How are coronavirus measures affecting service?

The fact that we constantly optimize our processes, and already have “remote monitoring” access to many of our modern production plants, has proved useful in the current situation. Some of our service technicians use videoconferencing to provide fast, uncomplicated support. Furthermore, we also have a global network of selected partners who also provide local support to our customers insofar as possible and permissible. The different versions of our maintenance kits are especially popular. For example, they give customers the option to arrange for replacement wearing parts to be exchanged by their company’s own technicians.

What is the current situation for your raw materials supplies?

We have sourced our raw materials up to now. However, even we are beginning to notice transport options and rising delivery costs.

Have you announced short-time working/have you needed to lay off staff?


Do you have special offers for your customers in view of the coronavirus crisis?

We utilize digitalization as an opportunity to develop new pathways. You can look forward to all the things we have in store for you.
Discussions with our customers and business partners take place online. This also includes the remote access mentioned above. It’s how we continue to assist our customers with active help and practical advice, and support them with our process know-how and as dough experts. Maintenance kits help our customers at their site. Moreover, we continue to offer more advice through our technologists, because sourdough can be prepared by using starter cultures such as our DIOStart. This in turn increases the shelf life and freshness of bakery products, and enables an increased input of water and a reduction in raw materials usage (e.g. sugar and fat). This can be hugely financially beneficial to our customers.
In addition, our teams do further research into the means by which we can support our customers. For example, we currently provide information via online platforms such as LinkedIn about the fact that DIOSNA customers who own a wheat fermenter (W Series) can produce hand disinfection agents according to the WHO recipe.

What are your plans for the period after coronavirus?

We will continue to give our customers high quality support in the usual way. The current global crisis is actually bringing us digitally a long way forward. The task in the future will be to utilize this opportunity and to develop it further for ourselves and for our customers.

The article is part of an extended feature, which was originally published in [BBI 3 – 2020]. Read the full article in the magazine: