Our history

After the end of the war, the chemist Heinz Caspar founded SALMIX® as a chemical-pharmaceutical company in Hamburg St Pauli in 1949. With his wife Eva and just four employees, he produced the first liquorice sticks, salmiak pastilles and cachou (pastilles for fresh breath) - for pharmacies and drugstores.

Only this much is certain about the closely guarded recipe secret: special oils from France, salmiak and liquorice are ingredients of the SALMIX® mixture, which is baked at 80 °C and then processed using the classic traditional manufacturing process. The original recipe is still used today.

Seventy-five years



Increasing popularity of handmade pastilles

Everyone wants to suck them, the little black salmiak pastilles. And the company grew bigger and bigger: In May 1990, the company moved to a more spacious new building in Sievershütten in the federal state Schleswig-Holstein.

Like father, like son

His son Reiner Caspar was also fascinated by the small diamond shaped pastilles from the very beginning. However, he first learnt the profession of pharmaceutical-technical assistant, completed a degree in dentistry and practised as a dentist.

In 1997, Dr Reiner Caspar took over sole responsibility for the company, which was now run by the whole family.

The number of employees grew noticeably, so that in the fiftieth year of our existence we were able to move into another office complex.

Over 70 years of Salmix® liquorice manufacture

Today, 70 years after the company was founded, the small manufactory is still owner-managed under the leadership of Mr Peter-Michael Thom.

The handmade liquorice products have become a firm favourite with liquorice lovers all over the world.

And one thing is certain:
The secret recipe of SALMIX® diamond shaped pastilles has always remained unchanged and unique.

Tradition and craftsmanship

The manufactory

The production of the raw material and the further processing of our Salmix® pointed pastilles is complex and requires a lot of time and expertise. It is not comparable with the production of industrial liquorice. Based on our unique process, we have been producing the typical flavoured diamond shaped pastilles in our factory for over 70 years.

This is done with the help of machines specially developed for our production. However, key steps in the production process still require the essential manual labour of our specially trained employees. The individual production steps describe the elaborate and complex manufacturing process.

The unique



1. the raw material store

The selected raw materials are carefully checked on arrival and then mixed by one of our master mixers in a precisely temperature-controlled storage room according to the original recipe from 1949.

2. the kneader

The Salmix® raw material mixture is filled into the special mixer in a predetermined order and heated. The subsequent cooking and kneading takes a lot of time, but is necessary to achieve the right consistency of the Salmix® liquorice paste. The consistency of the finished mixture is checked by an experienced employee and cut into individual blocks by hand when approved.

3. the discharge machine

Here, the individual blocks of raw material are compacted again between several rollers and then rolled out to the desired diamond thickness.

4. the Salmi cutter

This machine is called the "Salmi cutter" and was also specially developed for Salmix® diamond shaped pastilles. This production step creates the typical elongated diamond shape that also makes our Salmiak pastilles unique on the outside.

5. the cuddle box

The pointed pastilles are now carefully "cuddled" by hand on a sieve in the so-called cuddle box. This step serves to fix the diamond shape once again and remove any excess liquorice residue: This is where the pastilles get their unique and individual shape. No two diamond shaped pastilles are the same - and this is exactly how you can recognise the high-quality workmanship of a manufactory.

6. the drying room

Here, the small pastilles are stored hot for more than 2 days and checked for their degree of hardness at defined intervals. The drying room must be readjusted in terms of humidity and heat for each production batch in order to achieve the perfect consistency. Once this has been achieved, the diamond shaped pastilles are prepared for polishing.

7. the polishing drum

The final refinement stage of Salmix® pastilles takes place in the polishing drums, which were developed in 1949 and are made from a special hardwood that is unique in terms of function and appearance. This is where the "salmix-specific" natural ingredients are added and combined with the pointed diamonds during the polishing process. The process takes several hours and involves various polishing steps that must be strictly adhered to.

8. the laboratory test

After polishing, our Salmix® products undergo a multi-stage quality check - including colour, appearance, smell and taste. Once all factors have been approved by an independent institute, the respective batches are packaged and then sent on their way to our customers.

The most important ingredient

History of liquorice root

Liquorice has been around for snacking since the mid-19th century. However, the history of liquorice root goes back much further. The power of liquorice root juice was highly valued by the ancient Egyptians and Assyrians.

Even the Roman legionaries had liquorice as an integral part of their diet. In the 18th century, the juice was then used to treat a variety of ailments. Nowadays, liquorice root is used in particular as a delicious hard or soft liquorice.

The liquorice

(glycyrrhiza glabra)

Origin and harvest

"Liquorice rasps"

The German proverb “Süssholz raspeln“ probably refers to the effect of liquorice root on the vocal chords - it's much easier to woo your sweetheart with a clear throat!

Nowadays, liquorice or salmiak pastilles are not only very popular because of their pleasant, soothing taste for the care of the respiratory tract, but they are simply a much-loved snack.

Origin and harvest

No liquorice without the root of the liquorice bush (Glycyrrhiza glabra): The blue-purple flowering shrubs reach a height of around one to two metres.

The liquorice shrub is mainly found in the Mediterranean and Central Asian countries. The finger-thick and branched roots are harvested in late autumn: They can reach a length of up to eight metres.

A complex process then produces a black, viscous mass - the actual raw material for all liquorice products.

Liquorice contract manufacturing

We produce for you!

Are you looking for a contract manufacturer for your liquorice products, especially for salmiak pastilles?
Then you've come to the right place. We look forward to receiving your enquiry by email or telephone!