It all began in 1960 with a small pet shop in Ludwigshafen, Germany that Joachim Böhme, a trained druggist, bug specialist and aquarium keeper from Dresden, opened, thereby making a career out of his hobby. When diseases in ornamental fish became a problem, he developed a remedy against the "white spot disease", known as "Ichthyo" among aquarium keepers, in the course of time, a remedy by the name of Punktol that can still be purchased today. He needed a brand name to launch the drug on the market, so he put one together by using his initials, JB, and the name of the city where he was based, Ludwigshafen.
After the launch of the brand name JBL, the company quickly grew to become one of the largest providers of the full range of products for aquariums, terrariums and ponds in Germany. Since 1984, company headquarters have been located in Neuhofen/Pfalz. Today JBL supplies 60 countries worldwide with a range of over 900 products and over 300 spare parts. Approximately 50 % of sales are for export, 20 % of these to France.
Today still, the company, now managed by Roland Böhme, the founder's son, focuses on research. A separate building on the 2.5-ha site serves as JBL's laboratory where the new developments are tested in numerous aquariums under real-life conditions. In the event that JBL's own measuring devices aren't enough, they work together with leading scientific facilities in Europe so as to obtain absolutely precise results.
With a staff counting 160 employees, the company, now based in Neuhofen, produces diverse products for ornamental fish, ponds, turtles and reptiles. The focus here lies on the production of fish food with a large selection, owing to the NOVO, NANO and PREMIUM series. At the same time, though, remedies for ornamental fish, water treatment substances, fertilisers, water tests, pond fish food and pond care substances, tank filters and filter materials, CO₂ systems and turtle food also form a key area in JBL's production program.
Special machines, such as rollers for the production of flake food, a special mill for ultra-fine milling of the raw materials and a fully automated filling line for food mixes, all guarantee the production of flawless top quality products.
The medications are produced in-house and are subject to strict quality and safety regulations. Production in line with GMP is a paramount condition of the special authorisation granted to JBL.
Approx. 3300 raw materials of a quality grade corresponding to that of foodstuff ingredients are stored securely for production in our special storage for raw materials. Accordingly, JBL could bake a cake or bread any time it desires. 150 different raw materials are needed for just one product, like e.g. NovoBel, the staple food for ornamental fish. JBL is able to fill close to 30,000 1-litre containers per day with its machines. The amount of flake food that can be produced in one day is 1 m wide and 5.76 km long. This corresponds to approx. 14.5 track rounds. The tablet production facility produces 54,000 tablets per hour with a pressing power of over a tonne.
The finished products are stored in high-bay racking with a height of 16 m which has room for 9030 pallets, plus 1170 spaces for small parts that are moved by special fork lifts. Delivery and storage of the outgoing consignments are handled smoothly on 5600 m². An average volume of 20 tonnes leaves Neuhofen every day. That means 500 - 700 packages and 30 pallets distributed within Europe and worldwide. 90 % of the packages within Germany reach the recipient within 24 hours.
JBL offers the retail trade training and seminars to inform them about subjects relating to the field of fish keeping, as well as providing information on the current product range and the continual development and launch of new products. It is important that support is provided to retailers to assist them allowing them to give end-customers the best possible advice.
Expeditions have been taking place since 2001 and workshops with destinations throughout the world which alternate on an annual basis and are available to aquarium keepers, terrarium keepers, pet shop salespersons and nature lovers have been taking place since 2005 to supplement our research program. These events are so popular that there are significantly more applications than vacancies each year. The numbers of participants are limited in order to ensure optimum quality of the expeditions and workshops. This way, hobbyists have an opportunity to experience and explore aquarium keeping and terrarium keeping in nature.
Animal protection is a top priority at JBL's. JBL has been supporting the shark protection organisation, SHARK PROJECT, for many years as a small contribution to the protection of our oceans. JBL also operates three photovoltaic power units with a nominal power of 246 kWp (kilowatt peaks), thereby promoting sustainability. This is enough to supply 49 single-family homes with power every year. A biofilter has been used to eliminate odours and toxins from the exhaust air in our production facility since 2010 as a means for preventing pollution of the environment.
JBL provides every help and advice to end-users, with a detailed range of information and downloads on their new website, including an online laboratory to evaluate water analyses and an online hospital to identify fish diseases. Thanks to JBL´s research activities, the range is continually updated and expanded.