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Karl and Inge Hartlief took over Hoffend’s Family Butchery in the heart of Windhoek, Namibia. Karl had already been managing the butchery for many years. In the late 1940s, Hartlief’s Schlachterei was officially founded by Karl and Inge. Committed to providing premium continental style meat products, they steadily grew the butchery and established a small factory. Hartlief became known as a company based on the values of quality, tradition and family.



Hartlief, together with Kandler’s Fleischerei and Raith’s Meat Delicatessen, relocated to new premises near the abattoir. The Hartlief factory and wholesale shop are located there to this day. The three butcheries merged to form Hartlief Continental Meat Products.


It was now time for the younger generation to take over. Karl and Inge’s daughter, Renate, had married Wolgang Raith of Raith’s Meat Delicatessen, joining two meat specialist families. Both the Hartlief and Raith families hail from the Black Forest region in Germany, for which one of their well-known hams is famously named. Construction of the original Hartlief manufacturing plant was completed in the early 1970’s.


The younger generation injected new energy into the business leading to rapid expansion. The manufacturing plant underwent major renovations with new technology being introduced to allow the company to export to South Africa.

Hartlief started exporting to South Africa in the late 1980s. This affirmed Hartlief’s focus on quality rather than quantity. From the early days, an emphasis has been placed on producing premium products of the highest standards. There is culture, principle and belief in our manufacturing process.


Hartlief updated its packaging and started to use a new, modern logo. In the mid-1990s, the Farmer’s Meat Market SA (Pty) Ltd. was established. It supplied the Gauteng market with approximately 1 500 fresh Namibian lambs and sheep on a daily basis. These are sourced from the Farmers Meat Market's EU export approved abattoir in Mariental, in southern Namibia, and Hartlief's state of the art meat processing factory in Windhoek.




Hartlief merged with livestock producer organisation Farmer’s Meat Market and started to do business under the banner of Farmer’s Hartlief Consolidated Meats Limited. This allowed Hartlief the opportunity to work closely with the farmers who raised the livestock.

The merger emphasised the importance Hartlief places on farm to fork, produce to plate production. The parent company soon rebranded itself as Hartlief Corporation Ltd. Farmer’s Meat Market Windhoek, now known as Hartlief Wholesale, is a state of the art deboning facility and wholesaler of fresh and processed meat products.

The Hartlief Shop & Bistro opened during the late 2000s. A foodie’s dream, it offers a wide range of fresh and processed meat products as well as imported spices, pastas and wines.


Hartlief’s iconic tented Rooftop Bistro & Conference Centre was constructed during the early half of the decade. The Rooftop Bistro is a popular lunch spot for patrons in the area. The conferencing and catering facilities make it ideal for almost any event including team building sessions, birthday parties and even wedding receptions.  


The Hartlief Ongwediva was opened. It is a fresh, frozen and processed meat wholesaler and cold storage facility. Its location allows Hartlief to serve clients in the northern regions of Namibia as well as neighbouring African countries.

A new sales and distribution factory depot was opened in Cape Town. It serves as a wholesale distribution centre for Hartlief products to the public, retailers, wine farms and the catering industry.

The Farmer’s Meat Market and Hartlief Factory shop was opened in Johannesburg.

Hartlief entered the digital age by launching a new website and redesigning its packaging in time for our 70th anniversary.



Hartlief celebrates its 70th year in business.

In October 2016, the Hartlief factory in Windhoek achieves HACCP certification, another addition to a comprehensive collection of health and safety accreditations.

The first two Hartlief Deli branches opens its doors in Cape Town on 1 November 2016 at Gardens Centre and High Constantia Shopping Centre respectively. Customers can now buy directly a wide range of deli meats and authentic German goods, enjoy delicious coffee and food to sit down or take away.