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From generation to generation
Based on ancient and well-kept family recipes, the Dierinck family has passed on the passion for artisan bread from generation to generation. Christophe Dierinck (52) grew up with the heat of the ovens and the smell of freshly baked bread. From a young age, he helped his parents in the baker’s shop, first in Melsele and then in Nieuwpoort. He has managed Madie’s Boerenbrood since 1993. His son Alexander (25) and daughter Amandine (21) have also chosen a career as a baker.
Artisan products based on ancient recipes
When the bakery was established in the 1960s, Madie’s Boerenbrood only sold to shops and hotels. The family has owned a shop in Nieuwpoort-Bad since 1986. They opened their second establishment in Nieuwpoort-Stad in 2018. Madie’s is short for Marcel Dierinck. Half a century after Marcel put his first loaf in the oven, Madie’s Boerenbrood still produces bread in the traditional manner on the basis of ancient family recipes.
“Our bread is made using craft techniques; we do a lot manually, and this contributes to the flavour. I continue to work in the bakery and see to it that the quality of the bread remains constant. I make sure that all employees keep on using my parents’ traditional methods. Many people don’t realise that the ingredients are not the only factor impacting the bread’s taste and appearance; every step in the process is important. The flour used contributes to the flavour, but as it is a natural product, it will always be slightly different. As an artisan baker, you need to pay attention to this and make adjustments where necessary.”
Bread line on Sundays
Artisan bakers are becoming a bit of a rarity. Especially in summer, the freshly baked loaves and bread rolls attract lots of customers.
“Customers are often queuing out of the door. Madie’s is renowned for its bread rolls. The first rolls come out of the oven at six a.m. and we have a new batch ready every hour throughout the morning. Traditional bread is our specialty and another product we are famous for. Our bread is stone baked, which gives it a very rich flavour. Our product range includes about twenty different types of bread as well as pastries. We produce approximately 3,000 loaves a day. We do not wish to increase production further, so that we can keep everything in house and monitor the quality and flavour closely.”
Third generation of bakers
Alexander joined the business four years ago. He takes care of the logistics and administration of Madie’s Boerenbrood and runs the shop in Nieuwpoort-Stad together with his sister. “My sister and I grew up with the bakery. The older I become, the more important family is to me. Madie’s is a real family business and it works well; we all know our place in the bigger picture. When my father decides to quit, we will take over. This way, the tradition is passed on to the next generation.”
Father Christophe knows this is not as evident as it may appear. “Being a baker is a very demanding job. Baking begins at ten p.m. I usually start working around three or four a.m. My son and I normally work until two or three p.m. Especially at the weekend, Alexander and I also help out in the shops. Our customers appreciate our efforts. We work long days. If you are not 100% motivated, you will not keep it up.”
Madie’s and Titeca, a collaboration of 20 years
Christophe has relied on Titeca Accountancy for twenty years. “A friend of mine was a client and recommended Titeca Accountancy to me. Els Decru, one of the partners at Titeca Accountancy, has been my account manager since 1998. She does a lot more for us than just take care of the accounting. The company application, the purchase of our new shop, negotiations with the bank, Alexander joining the business, … Throughout the years, Els and her colleagues have arranged a lot for us. Before making any business decision, I always ask for her advice.”
“I discuss any business decision with Els from Titeca Accountancy first.”