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EinStückLand: from idea to successful start-up – Part 2.

A couple is standing behind a shop counter

With their start-up EinStückLand, Lina and Hinrich offer an online market place for meat from free ranging animals which are kept in a species-appropriate environment. They managed to turn the idea of selling high-quality meat from well-chosen breeders and small slaughterhouses into a successful business model.

A business model based on fair intentions.

The two founders first came up with the idea for their start-up at Christmas 2016. “My father asked us if we wanted to market Galloway cattle in Hamburg. His herd was becoming too big and there were not enough buyers”, Hinrich reports. That gave them food for thought. Both of them quickly realized: They did not want to devote all that effort to a one-off campaign. Therefore, they spontaneously asked other breeders if they had marketing problems as well. Their model for success? According to Lina and Hinrich, proper planning and motivation are the most important things when it comes to founding a company. “It was not our principal objective to become rich. This also means that you do not rip off your business partners or keep pressing them for the lowest prices.” The farmer and the butchers involved receive the most money from all the companies in the chain, followed by the founders themselves and their logistics specialist. “That was important to us from the outset.”

You have to stand fully behind your own idea and build up your business with a certain idealism.
A woman with a package is running towards a delivery van

More than just organic: For the start-up company, good taste begins by raising animals which are healthy and grow up in a species-appropriate environment.

This is how the foundation a success.

Lina’s and Hinrich’s best tips for the successful foundation of a company:

  1. Believe in your idea and be totally motivated.
  2. Always keep on track even though, at least initially, everybody seems to know better.
  3. Invest enough money and establish a limited liability company, for example.
  4. Bring a legal counsel on board and clarify from the start how to protect your interests adequately.
  5. Stick together when founding a company with one or more partners. Money isn’t everything!

  • A man packs glasses into a cardboard box
  • A box filled with packaged meat and lined with straw insulation
  • A box with a label from EinStückLand is marked with a stamp
  • A man hands a parcel with the inscription “EinStückLand” to a parcel delivery man

Completely sustainable: the shipping process.

Lina and Hinrich receive the eartag as well as information on the age, gender and pedigree of the animal from the farmer. Once the cattle has been marketed, it is taken to the butcher. It requires time to do a thing well: It takes at least two-and-a-half weeks until the meat is well hung. Then, the couple picks up the meat from the butcher and packs it. When it comes to the shipping carton, they also take care to live up to their sustainable philosophy. It consists of a straw insulation and cold packs filled with water. The meat packages are distributed throughout Germany via express delivery by their logistics partner with a Mercedes-Benz Sprinter. In this way, the vacuumed meat arrives in a cooled state. The customers can freeze the meat straight away so that it will last him for several weeks. “Our customers mostly come from households with two to five people and include all age groups.

A Sprinter drives along a avenue

EinStückLand cooperates with a logistics partner who distributes the meat packages overnight.

A man runs towards a parking van

When the meat is processed, the boxes are delivered well-cooled to the customer’s home.

Every beginning is hard, especially when you are a founder.

A lot of hard work was involved in what seemed well-designed from start to finish and sounded like a perfect business idea. One obstacle was the foundation of a GmbH (limited liability corporation) and the process of finding a name. Even worse: In the beginning, Lina and Hinrich were unable to find a butcher with whom they wanted to cooperate. “This could have resulted in the failure of the entire project.” And what are the everyday challenges of a start-up? “You are always faced with new situations. Initially, there is neither regularity nor an established routine. This means you always have to be on your toes and mustn’t allow yourself to get stressed out. Besides, you have to be immune to the fact that for a while everybody will identify you exclusively with your start-up.”

Looking into the future with a clear conscience.

Lina and Hinrich want to provide fresh ideas for the industry. “We want to reach all those who are tired of buying cheap meat and supporting giveaway prices.” They have committed themselves to fostering animal welfare. “The aim should be to establish more small-sized businesses rather than a few large ones.” It is planned to expand the product range: Soon there will be pork and poultry and the farm shop is due to be further expanded. Later, the product range on the internet will be widened and there is also supposed to be an online farm shop. Besides, EinStückLand will expand its business into different cities in Germany.

Pre-packed meat is put into boxes filled with straw

The boxes with fresh meat are at the core of the EinStückLand concept.

Sustainable, regional and fair: With their start-up, Lina and Hinrich want to create an alternative to meat from the discount store.

Two glasses of beef stock with a label from EinStückLand

Whatever is not sold in the boxes with fresh meat, the customers will find in “Deine Speisekammer” – the (online) farm shop.

An oblong cardboard box that says “Guten Appetit! (Enjoy your meal)”

In the farm shop, the same principle applies: Respect for living creatures and the sustainable use of resources have priority.

A couple is standing behind a shop counter

Lina and Hinrich know what good meat looks and tastes like.

Photos: Tim Wendrich

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