KNUD NIELSEN COMPANY
The Knud Nielsen Company began in October of 1913 when Knud Nielsen, Sr., an immigrant from Copenhagen, Denmark moved to Evergreen following tales of lush, prolific foliage in the area. After working with one of the already established shipping companies, Knud Sr. started his own business of grading, packing and shipping, via Railway Express, the wild smilax and magnolia leaves brought in on order by local farmers and collectors.
The Nielsen Company prospered for a number of years until the Great Depression of the 1930s. Although times were lean, it managed to survive as a supplier of magnolia leaves and pine cones to some of the largest memorial wreath makers in the country. As Knud Nielsen, Jr. later recalled, father was able to sell enough to come out of the Depression, and finally, in the early 40s, he made enough money to became debt-free by 1945.
Knud Nielsen Sr. died in 1947, and his oldest son, Knud Nielsen Jr., assumed management of the Company. Knud Jr. had returned to Evergreen in 1945 after studying chemical engineering at Auburn University. He was soon joined in 1954 by his brother, John Nielsen, who also graduated from Auburn University. Upon the removal of the passenger trains and the demise of Railway Express in the 50s, the shipping of perishable greens was discontinued. With this change, the Company directed its total effort to dried flowers and preserved materials. The brothers expanded the facilities and the product line and began importing raw materials from abroad. Over the following years, the Company would develop and patent landmark technology and equipment for the floral industry.
Today, under the management of cousins Knud Nielsen III, chairman and CEO, and Tom Nielsen, president and COO, the Knud Nielsen Company proudly continues over 100 years of service to its customers and friends in the industry. Throughout its exceptional history, the company has grown, adapted and evolved much like the rest of the floral industry. Nevertheless, its mission remains constant and unwavering. That is, the Knud Nielsen Company remains committed to providing its customers with natural floral products of the highest quality in a manner both courteous and prompt.