Unternehmensgeschichte Elmer und Zweifel historische Aufnahme vor 1900

The history of the company

Elmer & Zweifel: manufacturers of the organic brand Cotonea with more than 160 years’ expertise in cotton.

History Timeline
Gebr. Elmer & Zweifel

Over 160 years’ experience with cotton

  • Unternehmensgeschichte Elmer und Zweifel historische Aufnahme um 1910 nach Bau des Wasserturms
    Elmer & Zweifel in Bempflingen - historical photograph from 1910 after the construction of the water tower (on the left of this picture).

They found what they were looking for in Wuerttemberg in Germany, which at that time was bitterly poor, where labourers and free hydropower were available in abundance. It was surely a lucky coincidence that in those days the cotton-processing textile industry was becoming increasingly important in the entire German Mittelgebirgsregionen – the Central German Uplands Region. At first, they produced textiles for bedding and clothing, later Elmer & Zweifel specialised in producing fabrics for medical and technical use as well as baby care textiles. This market was very interesting and stable for many years – up until the fall of the Berlin Wall and competition from the Far East which posed a challenge to the company, the same challenge that the cousins Heinrich and Friedrich were confronted with the 19th-century. It quickly became clear: this field of business would shrink rapidly. The future would belong to organic and fairly produced cotton. The first organic cotton was processed as early as 1995, and in 2003 the first Cotonea products were launched onto the market.

The company Gebr. Elmer & Zweifel is still family owned. The founders – like all five generations that came after them - decided to lead a sustainable life and choose to use an as environmentally-friendly production process as possible out of respect for creation. For decades the company has been honouring this decision– at first only at the Bempflingen site and in the region, but also, since the opening up of the world's markets, we have been honouring this decision globally wherever we are active as a company.

The Timeline

Everything at a glance - from the foundation to today

  • Timeline Unternehmensgeschichte der Gebr. Elmer & Zweifel der Hersteller der Bio-Marke Cotonea
    Over 160 years of corporate history arranged chronologically.
Further topics
Die Cotonea Philosophie
The Cotonea philosophy

Cotonea endeavours to provide benefits, to not do any harm and to improve people’s lives.

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Cotonea Werte Teaser in der Übersicht
Cotonea’s values

We always do what many textile producers can’t even promise to do.

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Cotonea Aspekte der Nachhaltigkeit
Aspects of sustainability

Cotonea has been producing its own energy using hydropower since 1855 and its own solar energy since 2002.

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Die Cotonea Textil-Labels in der Übersicht
Textile seals & certifications

The flood of textile labels and what they really mean.

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