Founder Hoite Evert Schaap around 1880
Our story starts in 1880, when our grand father Hoite Evert Schaap starts with the export of Dutch dairy cattle to Germany and the Kaliningrad area.
Following the wave of emigrants from Europe to the USA, Friesian cattle was exported to the new-world, especially during the period from 1870 till 1900.
Remarkable voyage with dairy cows were made by Evert H. Schaap in 1898 to Australia and by Reinder H. Schaap in 1905 to South Africa. The third son, called Durk, went to Austria-Hungary in 1905 and Sweden in 1907.
Firma Schaap set up its own distribution centers in the Baltic provinces of Rusia (Jaunogre Latvia) and in Sweden.
Friesland, the home of the (Holstein) Friesian dairy cattle was getting more and more famous for its well bred dairy cows those days. Interested people from everywhere visited the area, to watch the progress in breeding with their own eyes.
Picture: 1907 Hoite Evert Schaap and his dairy cows in Talinn, Estonia.(Baltics)
Dutch Royal Family visits the farms of Firma Schaap in Dearsum, Friesland.
Queen H.M. Wilhelmina and Z.K.H. Prince Hendrik of the Netherlands.
Hoite R. Schaap, the 3rd generation, started the export to countries in South America, especially to Brazil, Argentina, Chile and Uruguay.
Photo’s: 1937 The heifers and bulls on the vessels to Peru in South America!
Hoite E. Schaap and Libbe van der Velde went as cattle attendants with a boatload heifers and bulls to Santos, Brazil in December 1945.
In 1950 Ale Tjallema, and in 1958 Auke Nijdam joined the team. They got responsible for South America, South East Europe, and countries like France, Morocco and Algeria.
A Russian trade delagation visited Friesland to explore the quality of the Friesian cattle. Soon after that the first boatloads with pregnant heifers left the harbour of Harlingen for Klaipeda. From there the animals were distributed to many farms in different areas in the former Sovjet Union.
With a hick-up in the ninetees, Russia is an important business partner and till today every year thousands of heifers are transported to different farms spread over Russia.
„One cow per family – programme“
During the seventies, thousands of heifers were shipped by boat to Tripoli and Benghazi in Libya. The programme „one cow per family“ was executed by the government in Libya, so dairy cattle were purchased from many European countries.
Another „air bridge“ was the export of 2400 heifers to the so-called „Saadco-project“ in Al Kharj in Saudi Arabia. Alfalaval (now: Delaval) was the main contractor for a mega cow project in the desert, just south of Riyadh.
In the period from 1980 till 2000 many dairy farms have been set up in the Middel East countries such as Jordan, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Oman and Qatar. The growing welfare resulted in a growing demand for fresh dairy products in these countries.
Also Mediteranean countries like Egypt, Lybia, Tunesia, Algeria and Morocco imported a lot of dairy cattle during those years, (and they actually still do!).
During the seventies and eighties, dairy heifers and bulls from Firma Schaap are exported to Zambia, Ethiopia, Sudan, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, Cameroon and Nigeria.
Shipping 1200 heifers to Egypt by vessel from Harlingen, The Netherlands in 1986.
After 1990 the political situation changed in the former USSR countries and creating a fast economic development. That is why East Europe became a very important market for us, especially Slovakia, Ukraine, Hungary, Poland and Russia.
During our long history Firma Schaap supplied special deliveries to royal farms in Jordan, Thailand and Saudi Arabia. Or to presidential breeding farms such as the one owned by president Daniel Arap Moi of Kenya.
Now 135 years later, we are still proceeding our way of doing business by serving quality, knowledge, loyalty and perfection. That’s how we already serve 5 generations of farmers worldwide!
We are proud being part of the dairy future in Europe, Russia, Middle East, Africa and Asia!
Today the 4th and the 5th generation of the Schaap family is active in the company already more than 30 years: Ytsen Schaap is responsible for the selection of the heifers and bulls and Nammen Schaap is responsible for sales and general management.