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Philip Hitschler-Becker

Owner · 4th Generation

Our History

Hitschler International is a family-owned company since 1929. In 1980s, Hitschler launched the famous Hitschies – soft fruit chews with a crisp shell and a unique long cylinder shape. Handcrafted, non-GMO, made with fruit juice, the gourmet candy is the favorite of confectionary fans, globally.

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Founded in 1929

At the end of the 1920s, Ferdinand Hitschler, the father of Walter Hitschler, started trading with tobacco and cachous – small, yummy licorice sweets which were originally a specialty from France. The period between 1929 to 1980’s was a period of growth and expansion for Hitschler International, under the able leadership of Walter Hitschler.

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Hitschie’s in the 1980s

In 1980s Hitschler International launched the famous Hitschies – soft fruit chews with a crisp shell and a unique long cylinder shape. Handcrafted, non-GMO, made with fruit juice, the gourmet candy soon became the favorite of confectionary fans around the world.

In 2017, Philip Becker-Hitschler, a fourth-generation candy maker, took over Hitschler International. In keeping with the spirit of his grandfathers, he enjoys innovating and creating the finest candies for the Hitschler customers.

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Full History

1920s

The hitschler company roots

At the end of the 1920s, Ferdinand Hitschler, the father of Walter Hitschler, started trading with tobacco and cachous – small, yummy liquorice sweets which are a speciality from France originally. During the mid-1930s he founded the Cologne-based trading company “Hitschler’s Cachou”.

What hardly anyone knows: Walter Hitschlers childhood home in Ölbergstrasse in Cologne was our company seat  until our relocation to Aachener Strasse in 2014.

1940s

Ferdinand Hitschler & Sohn

Walter Hitschler joined his father’s company when he was in his early twenties. The company changed its name to Ferdinand Hitschler & Sohn in 1946.

Walter Hitschler, who had always been passionate about sweets, initiated the ongoing expansion of the company’s sweets assortment: chewing gum and other sweets were now an established part of the company’s range.

1950s

hitschler International GmbH

Following the death of Ferdinand Hitschler, Walter Hitschler founded the company hitschler International, which still exists to this day. Inspired by his passion, the focus of the new company was now the sale of sweets in Germany and international.

From this point on, the company continually expanded. The acquisition and subsequent expansion of the ‘first German chewing gum factory’ in the mid 1950s represented the company’s decisive step into the future. From then on, hitschler International was not only a distribution company but also a manufacturing company.

1960s

A decade of expansion

News that hitschler sweets are not only high quality but also taste exceptionally good, travelled fast.

So it should come as no surprise that the products soon also found their way into shops in the rest of Europe: driven by Walter Hitschler’s entrepreneurial vision, the company ventured into entirely new markets and, from the 1960s, tasty hitschler products were even enjoyed in Saudi Arabia.

1970s

A decade full of innovations

The start of the decade saw the launch of a brand-new fruit-flavoured sweet sensation: Hitschler original fruit laces! These fruit laces were a hit and are still part of our yearround range today. Just two years later, one of our best-loved classics was born: SOFTI strip chews. They are a particular favourite in the Rhine region during carnival season. In the mid 1970s, hitschler launched another product innovation, which until then had never been seen before in Germany: bacon-shaped foam sweets! These light chews with the delicious vanilla cream flavour were soon a hit with confectionery fans of all ages!

1980s

The invention of HITSCHIES

Our range was expanded with yet more innovations in the 1980s, too – most notably, our famous HITSCHIES! Soft fruit chews with a crisp shell and a unique long cylinder shape. Initially known as ‘Fruchtige Häppchen’, we soon changed the popular sweets’ name to HITSCHIES to make it less of a mouthful for fans of confectionery around the world. Since then, HITSCHIES, with their crunchy glaze and made exclusively by hitschler, have become one of our best-known and most successful products enjoyed by fans of all ages around the world.

We had another major hit with our sherbet-filled Brause Flummis – brightly coloured discs filled with zingy fruit-flavoured sherbet.

1990s

Chewing Gum Made in Germany

We launched Jetties on the German market in the 1990s. This is our sugar-free, toothfriendly chewing gum, which is produced exclusively in Germany. They are available in various forms but are most popular in their blister packs, and are widely known across Germany.

At the same time, our HITSCHIES product range was expanded and our best-loved product gained even more fans.

2000s

New products & natural ingredients

In the new millenium our main focus is on the development of new products and the continued development of our existing product range. Our new and varied assorted mix of soft candies and bubble gums is a great success for young and old explorers, from the youngest to oldest. Under the sonorous name "kids treasure box", this fruity-sweet mix enriches the markets.

Another new development, our sweet and sour Party Laces with colouring fruits and plant extracts were enthusiastically received by our laces fans and have their proper place in the sweets shelf.

2010s

Walter Hitschler

The founder and sole owner of the company, Walter Hitschler, died in July 2010, at age 88. In line with his wishes, the company remains completely family-owned. In 2010, all our products were relaunched with a new design, which had been developed by Walter Hitschler since 2008. In order to make the hitschler brand more easily recognisable and easier to find on supermarket shelves, the blue hitschler wave now marks out all of our products clearly.

2015

80 years of hitschler

After eight decades of sweet history, we are celebrating the 80th birthday of our company in 2015. For this purpose, we have subjected the yummy hitschler world to an up-to-date relaunch. In time for the International Confectionery Trade Fair in Cologne in February, our products make a strong appearance with modernised logo and packaging design. At the same time, we want to thank our customers and fans for their confidence and their loyalty in the hitschler brand with a national sweepstake in keeping with the motto “In 80 days around the hitschler world”.

2017

In November 2017, Philip Hitschler-Becker, grandson of Walter Hitschler, follows in the footsteps of his grandfather. Having grown up with his brand and products since early childhood, he now continues the tradition of the Cologne-based family business. With the arrival of the fourth Hitschler generation, the family's enthusiasm for confectionery and the pioneering spirit of the founders lives on.

A Family Recipe of Love & Fun

A Family Recipe of Love & Fun

Enjoyed by fans of all ages around the world. Each of our chews is uniquely handcrafted.

Go ahead and taste them!