A history of indulgence

We are a third-generation Bavarian family company, steeped in tradition. At our facilities, we have been producing premium products for over 90 years.

Discover the Zott history of indulgence.

The 1920s


Anna and Balthasar Reiter purchase a small country dairy in Mertingen, in the Bavaria-Swabia region. This lays the foundation stone for the success of the Mertingen-based family of entrepreneurs and for the dairy as we know it today. The couple marry in 1923 and have a son, Georg Reiter.

The 1930s


Balthasar Reiter dies before his time. After two years of mourning, Anna Reiter marries Georg Zott in 1938. This is the man who lends his name to the company. At the time it was called "Molkerei Mertingen Georg Zott".

The 1940s

In the 40's fresh milk, butter, Edam, Limburger, Romadur, yoghurt, chocolate-drink and ice cream form the Zott product portfolio. At that time the daily milk yield amounted to 12,000 Liters.

The 1950s

The son from the first marriage, Georg Reiter, marries Frieda Ruppert in 1953. And the second generation of the family enters the dairy business. Frieda Reiter tirelessly supports her husband in expanding the company and together they successfully expand the range of products.

The 1970s


Georg Reiter is considered a visionary entrepreneur. His desire to expand was key to his personality and is reflected in the constantly increasing quantities of milk processed by the dairy. By 1970, the daily quantity of milk processed reaches around 80,000 litres a day. Soon the main facilities reach their capacity limits and in May of 1970, a new dairy with a fruit kitchen is built alongside the original building. In spring 1972, the company moves into the new building, step by step. Between the start of planning and the move itself, the quantity of milk processed has tripled.


Zott continues to grow and takes over "Molkerei Hans Schweyer" in Günzburg in Bavaria. Around 70 employees at this site are predominantly producing UHT milk.


Zott becomes a technological leader in the sterile packaging of "coffee cream". This new product sees Zott making pioneering technology a reality and establishes portionable coffee cream on the German market.


Under the slogan "Die großen Allgäuer" (The large Allgäuer) Zott was represented with 60 different products in the refrigerated shelves and serving counters. The prominent German folk actor Maxl Graf is a sympathetic advertising personality for our range of various fruit yoghurts for the whole family.


At the time, coffee-flavoured yoghurt was unheard of - "Zott Mocca" is a sensation in 1978.


And the trend for the future is also set in Günzburg. Molkerei Schweyer builds a new building on the Günzburg industrial park. The new location begins to produce Emmental and soft processed cheese.

The 1980s


With Christine and Georg Reiter, the third generation enters the dairy business and continues the family story. 


1980 sees the birth of today's classic indulgence, the "Zott Sahne Joghurt" (cream yoghurt) and the introduction of the "Weekend Feeling" advertising jingle. For the first time in the history of the company, we achieve national distribution with one of our products and, in 1986, we win the "Goldener Zuckerhut" award, the food industry Oscar. This decade also sees our tiramisu dessert speciality and Zottarella mozzarella hit the market.


In Günzburg Zott, Schweyer and the cheesemaker St. Mang from Allgäu found Zoma. As early as 1983, the construction of a drying system commences alongside the dairy recently relocated to the industrial park. The new drying system takes up production of powder products for the processing industry.


The start up of an own pot production facility at the headquarters in Mertingen is a considerable development for packaging competence. The direct printing procedure continues to be used well after 2000. After 2006, the yoghurt pots are produced using a modern high-quality in-mould labelling procedure which offers additional options with regard to packaging decor.

The 1990s

The iron curtain collapses and we tap into the new German states and neighbouring Eastern European countries. Until such time as continuous cooled distribution is successful, we supply products with long shelf lives. In subsequent years, sales subsidiaries are opened in Czechoslovakia (1991), what is now Slovakia, in Wroclaw in Poland (1992) and the Czech Republic (1993). With the founding of Zott Hungary (2002) our Eastern European sales sites are complete for the time being.


The Mertingen-based company is still on an expansion course. After the step-by-step introduction of individual production sectors at the end of the 1980s, spring sees "Werk 2" - the new production facility - dedicated in Mertingen along with a separate fruit kitchen. Over the course of a number of years and project phases, the former main factory relocates to the green meadow site on Bäumenheimer Strasse.


Milk-based treats for children - the children's classic "Monte" is released. This tasty combination of milk cream, chocolate and hazelnuts is the most successful new introduction in its category in Germany. For Monte the slogan "Gut drin, gut dran, gut drauf" (full of taste, full of power, full of fun) applies and still applies even today.


In Poland, the introduction of the fruit yoghurt "Jogobella" is a great breakthrough for us. The brand concept of Jogobella is developed specifically for Polish consumers and tailored to the typical tastes of the country. At a later date, the concept of extra large fruit chunks is introduced into many countries in Central Europe.


Based on the unbelievable success in the fruit yoghurt segment, we decide to produce the fruit yoghurt for the Polish market on the ground in Poland. We sign the contract for the purchase of our first foreign production facilities located in Opole in Poland and immediately start the renovation and expansion work. In spring of 2000, the first pots of yoghurt roll off the conveyor belts.

The 2000s


The company logo gets a facelift. The first slogan "Genuss von A bis Zott" (Indulgence from A to Z(ott)) is now followed by "Zott - Die Genuss-Molkerei" ("Zott - The Gourmet Dairy"). From this point onwards, indulgence and quality are foregrounded even more and resound cosily in the name of the company.


Development and quality always play a central role. To delivereven more competence and innovation, the new development and quality centre is opened in May at our Mertingen headquarters offering a variety of cutting-edge Options.

2010 and beyond


Our employees are our potential. In Mertingen (2011) and Günzburg (2013), we open Zott Active Centres to promote health.  


Our Monte brand conquers Facebook and quickly cracks the 400,000 fan barrier.  


Our new international cheese brand "Bayerntaler" scoreswith its appeal of Bavarian cosiness and great taste.


Another milestone is reached. As the 100th company, we win the licence for the use of the "Ohne GenTechnik" seal from Lebensmittel ohne Gentechnik e.V. Our "Zottarella" brand is, at the time, the first German and only international mozzarella brand that meets the strict EU regulations for labelling that is "without GM". Shortly after, we also convert the production of Bayerntaler products over to milk that is GM-free and free from imported feed.  


With the international background of our Gourmet Dairy in mind, we change our name to "Zott SE & Co. KG".  


The Zott family continues to grow with the purchase of the Polish branded product manufacturer Bacha Polska.


For the first time, our dairy awards the Goldene Milchkanne (Gold Milkcan) as a prize for the best milk within the framework of our "Zott Qualitätsmilch aus Leidenschaft" ("Zott Quality Milk Is A Matter Of Passion") Programme. From now on, the competition will take place every two years.


Since 1926, we are the Gourmet dairy and celebrate our 90th anniversary in 2016. A great opportunity to dedicate one of our classics, the Zott Sahnepudding, a special golden edition.


In this year, Zott Vietnam Company Limited was founded, which is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Zott and has more than 800 employees.


For the second time in the company's history Zott is awarded the "Goldener Zuckerhut" (Golden Sugarloaf), the Oscar of the food industry.



In March, the new Zott Genusswelt & Outlet opens in Asbach-Bäumenheim. In a construction period of just over a year, the new address for yoghurt and cheese lovers, for those taking a break, for bargain hunters, for those looking for exquisite products and for connoisseurs was created in the industrial estate on the B2.


Just under a year later, it was awarded Store of the Year 2020 in the food category by the German Retail Association HDE.

The 2020s


Company owner Christine Weber announces that she will focus on her role as Chairwoman of the Board of Directors from 2022. Frank Uszko will be appointed CEO of the Zott group as of 01.01.2022.


This will be the first time that Zott will be headed by a manager who does not come from the owner family. Christine Weber will in future bring her entire entrepreneurial commitment to the Board of Directors of Zott SE & Co. KG.


We are launching a new product range in the summer that is made up of purely plant-based raw materials. A significant and innovative step in the history of our Gourmet-Dairy.