Interview with Klaus Schekhahn

Klaus Schekhahn, managing director of production and technology for “Anklam Extrakt GmbH” , on the construction of a storage hall and workshop.

“HAB's flexibility is outstanding.“

There are quite a few herbs with healing powers. But how do the herbs become medicine? A young company in Anklam (north east Germany) specialises in the necessary extraction process. Their first production hall was built in 2009, in which ivy, artichoke, hibiscus and the like are extracted by the company's cutting edge machinery, bottled and sold as high quality extracts - “made in Germany” - to the pharmaceutical, food and cosmetics industries. Anklam Extrakt had become so successful, that the existing production site had to be extended in 2015. The company decided on “Made in Wusterhusen”. We wanted to find out why “Made in Germany” is so important for Anklam Extract and its customers, which challenges HAB faced during the construction of the hall, and how the working relationship between us was.  


You've really committed yourselves to being fully “Made in Germany.” That's not so normal when so many things are produced abroad nowadays. Why do you want to do things differently?

We supply, among others, producers of plant based medications and food supplements. The demands on quality in this sector are very high. Being “made in Germany” we can offer outstanding quality. That's not the only way we have an advantage over our competitors, though. We don't just supply plant extracts, but offer a full spectrum of service packages too, from the procurement of plants to the finished extract. Suppliers from the Far East can't offer that, for example.

The competition isn't a problem for you then? 

Of course it is. We are, however, always able to convince our customers that our products' higher price tag is justified. We try to work as partners as opposed to the traditional client-supplier relationship. We help our customers with authorisation formalities and with the creation of Drug Master Files (DMF's; documentation of active ingredients etc.), develop new products to market maturity and so on. In addition, we are flexible and can concentrate on creating new products.

You extended your production facilities in 2015 and chose HAB. Why us? 

We had previously got to know and value HAB, and therefore had already experienced their reliability, creativity and flexibility.

Were there any special challenges HAB had to deal with during construction? 

In the pharmaceutical field, specifications are very demanding. We work for example with solvents like ethanol. This meant that the new hall had to be explosion-proof. It was, without a shadow of a doubt, a very high calibre building project, where HAB, our reliable and creative partner, certainly gave us great support.

What worked out especially well while working with HAB? 

I enjoyed the open minded cooperation. The company's flexibility was outstanding. We work depending on the orders we receive, and the requirements can be changed at short notice. That happened during the building process. We were able to talk to HAB about our new needs, and they made the necessary changes very quickly. It's not without reason that we asked HAB to help us on our current project- the construction of a new raw materials warehouse. At first it was supposed to be just a warehouse.Then we realised the need to incorporate offices into the warehouse building. HAB changed the plans at short notice and is currently building them.