For over 125 years, generations of the Bahlsen family have made European biscuits to be enjoyed by generations of biscuit lovers. Bahlsen’s origins lie in the entrepreneurial spirit of its founder, Hermann Bahlsen, who launched his business in 1889 in Hannover, Germany where his descendants carry on the company today.
Proud to be known as the largest family-run biscuit producer in the world, the Bahlsens maintain the twin standards that their grandfather established of traditional quality and innovative improvements.
The first of these innovations was the launch of the company’s best-known product, Leibniz Keks, in 1891.
Next, in 1904, it pioneered the first moisture resistant packaging for biscuits, a breakthrough that ensured every biscuit would remain as crisp as the moment it left the oven.
By 1912, thanks to Hermann Bahlsen’s vision, more than 12 million packs of Leibniz Keks had been sold, and the word “Keks” had become the official German word for biscuit.
The historical Bahlsen building is still in use today as the company’s headquarters, with Hermann’s grandson, Werner Michael Bahlsen, at the helm.
The Bahlsens of this generation are still driven by the family passion: to make a delightfully varied line of high quality biscuits created with innovative recipes, sourced from the finest natural ingredients, and baked to perfection.
The Leibniz-Keks or Choco Leibniz is a German brand of biscuit or cookie produced by the Bahlsen food company since 1891.
The brand name Leibniz comes from the philosopher and mathematician Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz (1646–1716). The only connection between the man and the biscuit is that Leibniz was one of the more famous residents of Hanover, where the Bahlsen company is based. At the time when the biscuit was first made there was a fashion of naming food products after historical celebrities (compare Mozartkugel).
The Leibniz-Keks is a plain butter biscuit, or Butterkeks as it is known in German, inspired by the French Petit-Beurre created in 1886 by Lefèvre-Utile. The word Keks in Leibniz-Keks was originally a corruption of the English word "cakes" by Bahlsen. Due to the popularity of the Leibniz-Keks, Keks has since become the generic German word for a crunchy, sweet biscuit.
The original Leibniz biscuit has a simple and distinctive design. Fifty-two "teeth" frame the rectangular field on which "LEIBNIZ BUTTERKEKS" is imprinted in capital letters. This was Hermann Bahlsen's original 1891 design. The biscuit has been featured in a series of "Monuments of German Design" by the Süddeutsche Zeitung.