From bean to bar: PROBAT Group member HDM celebrates 10th anniversary

Emmerich, Germany, October 12, 2023: Ten years ago, PROBAT expanded its business segment and founded Hamburg Dresdner Maschinenfabriken, or HDM for short to cover the entire process chain from the cocoa bean to the finished chocolate bar. Today, HDM is one of the leading manufacturers of machinery for the cocoa and chocolate industry and known around the world for its ability to provide the appropriate production line for any required end product ‒ without interface risk and in the highest quality.

The PROBAT Group – world market and technology leader ‒ primarily manufactures equipment and machinery for the global coffee sector but has also been building cocoa roasters and sugar mills for many decades. Thus, it was almost a given that the company would eventually enter the cocoa and chocolate business. In 2013, the time had come and HDM was founded after the takeover of the Scottish Ladco Group and the merger of the established brands MacIntyre, Beetz, Petzholdt-Heidenauer, and Bauermeister, a subsidiary of PROBAT. And since, in addition to the sites in Arbroath, Scotland, and Emmerich am Rein, production also takes place in Hamburg (Norderstedt) and at the headquarters in Dresden, the name Hamburg Dresdner Maschinenfabriken was an obvious choice.

PROBAT CEO Wim Abbing looks back on an exciting first decade with HDM as a member of the PROBAT Group: “We had the know-how and wanted to expand into a related sector. Like coffee, cocoa and chocolate are products where refining requires fundamental product knowledge and an understanding of the processing conditions that influence the taste and aroma. And this, in turn, defines the technologies to use. Ten years later, HDM has become the one-stop-shop provider for the global cocoa and chocolate industry synonymous with high-quality components within an exceptionally broad range of machinery and equipment. We are proud that HDM is a part of the PROBAT Group of companies and are very happy to celebrate the 10th anniversary together this year.”

By combining the experience and application know-how of MacIntyre, Beetz, Petzholdt-Heidenauer, and Bauermeister under the HDM umbrella, PROBAT ten years ago created a company with a product program much greater than the simple sum of its individual brands.  From pretreatment plants, winnowers, roasters, grinders, refiners, and conches to molding and enrobing plants ‒ it covers the entire process technology needed for cocoa refining and chocolate production as well as size reduction technology for related industries.

For demonstrations and tests, HDM operates its own Research and Development Center in Dresden, which houses not only a state-of-the-art laboratory but also all the process technology needed to develop new products. Here, HDM engineers analyze customer requirements and translate them into holistic application concepts.

HDM helps ensure that the world of chocolate continues to grow – very much in the interests of a great many connoisseurs in numerous countries around the globe.

Find out more about the one-stop-shop provider for the global cocoa and chocolate sector at