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Bavarian State Mint
For more than 850 years, the Bavarian Mint has made the quality of its coins, seals and medals its first priority. In the past, the quality and rating of the coins were more dependent upon the value of the metal. Today, however, because of modernized production techniques, the quality of the coin determines the value of the coin. The requirements for quality are influenced by many different factors including the condition of the coin and the purity of the metals used. It is also crucial that the mint be able to prevent its coins from being counterfeited.
In order to maintain its level of quality and stay ahead of counterfeiters, the Bavarian Mint focuses heavily on new methods and technologies in production and quality control. The mint is able to be involved with the development of these processes by staying actively engaged with both suppliers and customers. Because of this system, the mint is at the intersection of the supplier’s capabilities and the wants of the customer. This flexibility has proved to be an asset to the mint, making them an ideal partner for anyone with a tall order. These conditions put the Bavarian Mint in an excellent position to secure a permanent place in the coin and medal production market, despite global competition.
The Bavarian State Mint is one of five German state mints, along with Berlin, Stuttgart, Karlsruhe and Hamburg. Currently, about 21 percent of all German euro coins in circulation are produced at the mint in Munich and are identifiable by the “D” mintmark.
In 1986, the mint moved to Zamdorfer Srasse, its current location, because it had outgrown its previous home at the factory at Alten Marstall.
Popular Bavarian State Mint ProductsThe Bavarian State Mint manufactures a range of products including Gold coins, Silver coins and Platinum coins. The value of these coins depends on their purity as well as numismatic factors like year, artwork and historical significance.
- Somalia Gold Elephants
- Gold Marks
- Gold Collector’s Euro Coins
HistoryEstablished in 1158, the Bavarian Mint, then called the Munich Mint, is considered the oldest operating company in Munich. The original location of the mint was the Schrannenplatz (now the Marienplatz), Munich’s city center, and coins were authorized to be minted the same year as the institution’s establishment. Later, during the 1290s, coins from the Bavarian Mint became greatly devalued due to their low Silver content. In protest, a number of Bavarian citizens destroyed the coin forges and killed the mint master, Münzmeister Schmiechen. Subsequently, the forges were reconstructed at the Münzstraße in Berlin, although the Munich Mint remained.
Between 1705 and 1714, the Electorate of Bavaria was occupied by Austria as a result of the War of the Spanish Succession. During the occupation, both Austrian and Bavarian coinage were struck at the mint in Munich. In 1809, the Bavarian Mint moved to the Old Mint Yard at the Hofgraben and Pfisterbach. In that same year, the other mints in Bavaria were shuttered and the Munich Mint changed its name to the Bavarian State Mint.
In 1871, the German Empire was established, comprised of 25 states of the former German Confederation, including the Kingdom of Bavaria. Two years after the foundation of the Second Reich, in 1873, all state currencies were removed from circulation and replaced with the Gold mark. The Bavarian Mint, as well as mints in Berlin, Dresden, Frankfurt, Hamburg, Hannover, Karlsruhe, Muldenhütten and Stuttgart were permitted to produce the new central currency. In order to distinguish at which facility the coins were manufactured, each mint was assigned a mintmark. The mintmark assigned to the Bavarian Mint, D, has been on every coin produced by the mint since 1873.
During World War II, the Bavarian Mint was damaged numerous times by Allied air raids between 1939 and 1945. Allied forces occupied Germany after war had ended, taking control of Germany’s mints and issuing Reichsmark coins until 1949. During that same year, Germany was divided into the German Democratic Republic (East Germany) and the Federal Republic of Germany (West Germany), controlled by the eastern and western Allied forces, respectively. The Free State of Bavaria became a part of Western Germany and the mint subsequently became responsible for issuing coins for the West Germany currency reform. The mint was moved to the Zamdorf district of Munich in July of 1986, where it is still housed to this day. When Germany was reunified in 1990, the mints controlled by the East began producing the currency used by the Federal Republic of Germany. The Bavarian Mint was also one of the first to manufacture euro coins before its adoption in 2002.
Coins and MedalsThe Bavarian Mint, along with the Berlin, Hamburg, Karlsruhe and Stuttgart Mints, is responsible for the production of both general issue and commemorative German euro coins. It also produces the Andorran Eagle bullion coin series. From the mint’s inception to 1873, the mint was responsible for producing the Bavarian Gulden until the switch to the Gold mark was made. The mint then produced Papiermarks in 1915, Rentenmarks in 1922, Reichsmarks in late 1923 and Deutsche marks in 1949.
In addition to coins, the Bavarian Mint also produces medals and official seal plates. They were responsible for producing the official Olympic medals for the 1972 Summer Olympics, held in Munich. Medals commemorating the Kingdom of Bavaria, the porcelain factory at Nymphenburg Palace and the mint itself were also produced in Munich.
Quality and Environmental ResponsibilityAlthough the mint is very well trusted, it is constantly adapting and improving its quality control and manufacturing processes, ensuring the utmost quality and precision. The Bavarian Mint also continually trains its employees and raises awareness about its involvement in every step of the production process, the connection they have with their clients, and quality awareness. The goal of the Bavarian State Mint is to satisfy customer needs as efficiently and expediently as possible. Additionally, the mint continually tests its various methods and systems to make as many improvements as possible.
Because the Bavarian State Mint is owned by the Free State of Bavaria, the mint feels an obligation to the people of Bavaria to preserve the environment. In fact, an important part of the mint’s management philosophy is to regard ecological awareness as a key element taken into consideration by every aspect of the business. The Bavarian Mint is even certified under ISO 14001, an internationally accepted standard that delineates how to impose a practical and competent environmental management system within a business or organization. The purpose of ISO 14001, and the entire ISO 14000 family, is to help businesses minimize the negative impact their operations have on the environment and remain financially successful while helping them comply with any laws and regulations designed to protect the environment.
In order to produce the mint’s various coins, seals and medals in an environmentally conscious manner, every employee of the mint is required to undergo training in environmental politics. Additionally, the mint advises customers and other organizations with which it does business to adopt more environmentally responsible practices.
Last Updated: 2/27/2017 5:00:20 PM ET
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