plan b: The good milk – benefit for cows, climate and customers

Cappucino, butter, cheese sandwiches: milk is in everything. It can cost a bit more: consumers are increasingly attaching importance to fair wages for farmers, animal welfare and the eco-balance. 

Farmers can hardly live off the low milk prices. Factory farming is cruelty. Cattle are considered climate killers. Good reasons to look for alternatives. “You’re the boss here” is the name of an initiative in which everyone decides for themselves how much a litre of milk should cost.

Consumers were able to vote on this in an online survey. Every click had consequences for production: more animal welfare, more regionality, more money for the farmer – all this was immediately reflected on the price tag. Result: an above-average price for high standards. “We are prepared to pay more for our milk if we can be sure that it contains what it says,” says Barthelmé.Now his milk is on the first supermarket shelves, and it will be exciting: do consumers really buy the milk they have chosen online?

Almost every day a baby calf is born on the farm of farmer Lenz in Saxony-Anhalt.

A high-performance farm with 350 cows. And yet: seeing mother and calf take their first steps together is always a moment of happiness for him. “We farmers don’t want to keep our cows badly. It’s just that we often lack the money for a good life,” says Frank Lenz. Nevertheless, the forty-year-old wants to keep going, and he has big plans for the conventional dairy farm, which he is running in the eleventh generation. His first step: The calves stay with their mother after birth and are not separated from her immediately, as is usually the case. They are then allowed to drink from udders for a whole three months – instead of from buckets in calf pens. Milk that the farmer can no longer sell. But he is determined to prove that it is possible: more animal welfare, even on a large farm. 

Mudar Mannah was on his way to becoming a successful surgeon when he decided to dedicate his life to another task after all: as a climate saver. He wants to help reduce the emission of climate-damaging gases – especially methane, which is many times more harmful than CO2. Cattle produce huge amounts of it. Mannah was therefore looking for a plant-based alternative to cheese. “One that tastes good,” he says. That’s how he came up with the cashew nut. He now makes vegan Camembert from it, and with a good eco-balance, despite the transport of the nuts from Vietnam. “We simply have to rethink,” he says on the subject of climate change, “our planet resents us. We can’t go on like this.”

Produce and consume more consciously – not at the expense of the environment, animals and farmers: That’s what it’s all about. Good milk, that’s what makes it!

Trump, my American family and me

Ingo Zamperoni on the road in a torn country

Ingo Zamperoni knows the USA like few others, not only because he spent formative years here as a student and later reported on Americans as a US correspondent. The presenter of the ARD Tagesthemen is married to Jiff, an American, and has a large family in the States. And they are just as divided about conservative President Donald Trump as the whole country.  Father-in-law Paul elected the controversial Republican to the White House. Zamperoni’s wife Jiff is as appalled by this as her mother Lynn.  Shortly before the presidential election, Ingo Zamperoni wants to find out why not only his family-in-law but the whole country is so torn apart. Zamperoni embarks on a family-political search for clues. He wants to understand what excites his father-in-law Paul about the blustering president? How does he manage to see past the many lies, inconsistencies and lapses? And how does his mother-in-law’s second husband, who is black, deal with racism in Trump’s America? And perhaps even Zamperoni’s wife and mother-in-law, the Democrats in the family, will have to concede certain successes of his policies after four years of Trump? And: how will the relatives vote in November?

Through his personal approach, the celebrity anchor brings us closer to the world of American thought in a unique way. An attempt at explanation that makes you think.

The Treasure in the Desert Sand – Turkmenistan’s Ancient Heritage

Turkmenistan was long considered the poorest region of the Soviet Union. It is probably one of the most unknown and closed countries in the world. Today, oil and natural gas have made the country in western Central Asia rich.  For the first time in 10 years, a film team was able to visit impressive excavation sites unhindered and accompany international research teams as they worked on sites that had been “forbidden” for a long time.

4000 years ago, a centre of power of the ancient world was located in Turkmenistan. Although flourishing at the same time as the advanced civilisations of Mesopotamia and Egypt, the ‘Margiana’ empire was completely forgotten. Only recently did archaeologists discover palace buildings and magnificent burial treasures in the middle of the Karakum desert in the former capital Gonur Depe.

Spectacular aerial photographs show the dimensions of the “lost” metropolises in a hostile environment. An international team of researchers is also uncovering monumental fortifications in neighbouring Ulug Depe. The ruined cities of Merw and Köneügentsch are declared World Heritage Sites by UNESCO.

Suddenly, Central Asia comes into the focus of science and the media. Why have powerful empires risen and fallen in Turkmenistan since the Bronze Age? DNA analyses prove a high mobility of the population, long-distance contacts reached as far as India, the Urals and the Mediterranean. The Silk Road between China and Europe became the world’s most important trade route for millennia and made Turkmenistan an important hotspot in history.

Sons of the Sun – The Incas

The Incas appear out of nowhere and within a few decades their empire develops into the largest empire in the world at that time. They ruled over more than 200 peoples with a good 10 million people.

At that time, there was talk of a fabulous land of gold in distant Europe, arousing fatal desires there. Gold is the “tears of the sun”, as the Incas saw it. For them, the precious metal had only spiritual value and no material value.

The culture is fascinating and at the same time strange to us. The Incas also sacrificed people – preferably children – to their gods. In the eyes of the Inca, they were considered the chosen ones.

To this day, the Inca are surrounded by an aura of mystery. How could their meteoric rise succeed in such a short time? And how did a handful of Spaniards manage to bring down the empire?

Kaminer Inside: Summer of Culture with Obstacles

Summer, that is the season of festivals, concerts and folk festivals all over Europe. 2020 is different: due to the Corona crisis, major events in Germany, Austria and Switzerland are banned until at least the end of August – and what is possible after that is still written in the stars. Are we facing a summer WITHOUT culture? Is that even possible? Are there alternative concepts? What will happen at the places that are otherwise the venue for prestigious cultural events summer after summer and are overrun by crowds of visitors? What does this mean for the organisers and artists on site, what does it mean for us visitors? What is the mood like on site?

As a writer, Wladimir Kaminer himself is acutely affected: Almost all his readings and events have already been cancelled, private theatre and concert visits are impossible, he has already cancelled his holiday.

He takes the audience on a journey through the three 3sat countries, into the heart of the festival industry: he travels to the orphaned venues and meets artists, organisers and supporters. His journey takes him to three very different places, all of which are among the most visited and renowned cultural venues in Europe: the Oberammergau Passion Play, the Montreux Jazz Festival and the Bregenz Festival. 

Know what you buy – More transparency for customers

What we buy every day often has a long journey behind it. We rarely find out who produced it, how – and under what conditions. Consumers are now asking more questions.

Companies have rarely cared about the origin of the raw materials or the local working conditions. The main thing was to make a profit. But that is changing. Some pioneers are setting out to fight for more transparency, fairness and responsibility.

At Quijote Coffee in Hamburg, everyone can know everything. Company founder Andreas Felsen receives the same salary as his employees – and this can be seen on the website. There you can also find out exactly where the coffee beans come from. There is also information about local wages, transport, storage and packaging. “Transparency is important for us to focus on the people who do the real work,” says Felsen. “We as coffee roasters are not responsible for the quality of the coffee, but the farmers who grow it. And it is important to draw attention to them.”

Because if you see with your own eyes how much work goes into a product, you will be more willing to pay higher prices for fair goods. Textile manufacturer Ralf Hellmann produces bed and table linen for hotels, hospitals and restaurants. He therefore invites his customers to India – to the places where the cotton is grown and harvested. Rolf Slickers travels with him. “That is a special experience for me, to come to the absolute beginning of the supply chain.” Will this experience change anything for the businessman?

Antoni Hauptmann embarks on a journey to the origin of a fishcake. On a fish trawler, he wants to log where and how the fish is caught and processed – and thus make it possible to check whether everything has been done properly. To do this, he uses “blockchain” technology, which is supposed to enable forgery-proof traceability. Hauptmann’s wish: truly sustainable fishing – through transparency. “The fish with the serial number,” he says, “that’s what’s interesting.”

Coffee roaster Andreas Felsen has big things in mind: “I want to convince the coffee industry with my idea and turn it around in the long term.” That’s why he tirelessly tries to persuade other coffee producers to be more transparent. And the committed idealist is indeed being heard. Even an industry giant like Tchibo doesn’t want to ignore the trend – and doesn’t want to hide anything. Consumers demand transparency, and they get it.

37°: The Maturity Test – Growing Up in Difficult Times

Growing up is always complicated, but how difficult is it to graduate from high school during a pandemic? The Corona crisis is a watershed that shapes a generation. There is now life before Corona and after.

The time of the Abitur is in itself an emotional state of emergency, fear and uncertainty are part of it. But after the exams, there should be great freedom – the best summer of one’s life. Instead, Corona came this year.

Zoe is 18 years old and attends a convent school in Hamburg. At the beginning of March, there were holidays in Hamburg and Zoe was on a skiing holiday. After that, the school-leavers were supposed to have their last day of school, celebrate the motto week and then take their exams from mid-April. But because of the pandemic, everything turned out differently: the holidays were followed by a school closure and then a debate about whether and how the Abitur could take place. Two Hamburg Abitur students started an online petition and demanded an average Abitur: the grades of the last two years should form the Abitur average, without any exams. “I don’t want an Abitur without exams. Otherwise it will probably be said forever that we have the Corona Abitur, which is not a real Abitur at all. I’ve always been good at organising myself, but the whole situation of not knowing what’s going to happen, not being able to plan for the time after, puts a strain on me,” says Zoe. The pressure of grades is great: Zoe wants to study law, preferably in Berlin. To do so, she has to pass a numerus clausus of 1.5. But first she wanted to go on her first big trip in the summer, to travel through Asia for months. Now all her plans are on hold.

“I’m scared, especially for my family and pre-sick friends. I don’t know how to act. I miss my friends, but it scares me to know that millions of people could die if we don’t take action.” Zoe’s best friend Lucie (19) is an only child, for weeks she has only seen her friends on video chat. Study groups are not allowed, libraries are closed, classes are held online, if at all. Lucie is a good pupil, later she wants to study either biology or art. “It’s a stage of life after all, twelve years of working towards our degree and looking forward to the time afterwards. And now I can’t even remember my last day at school or really celebrate my graduation. Just a moment ago I was a normal student and now I’m suddenly an adult.” Lucie and Zoe are planning to move to Berlin in the summer and are looking for a shared flat. Maybe Lucie will do a voluntary ecological year there, stays abroad are probably hardly possible anyway. “I’m afraid that our life will never be normal again, like it was before. There are so many issues our generation has to deal with, from climate change to gender issues to racism. And now Corona too.”

For Owen and Quinten (20) from Zoe’s year at grammar school, the period of no contact is a little less lonely: “That’s the advantage of doing A-levels together with your twin. They learn together, support each other. After the Abi Ball, the passionate gamers wanted to take a few weeks’ family holiday in Korea, but that falls through. “Somehow I have the feeling that the pandemic also offers us opportunities as a society and shows what we are capable of together. I think that’s much more important than the fact that I might not be able to go on holiday or start studying until later,” says Quinten. Actually, Quinten wants to study Games Management in Wedel from September on – but will that work in times of the pandemic? Owen needs a good degree for his planned business studies, but he struggles extremely with mathematics in home schooling: “The A-levels will be the biggest challenge of my life. And the pandemic makes it more difficult for many because there is a lack of concentration, we have missed lessons and it is simply harder to study. And that has an impact on our future.”

37 Degrees follows four young people as they grow up during the Corona crisis and shows how the pandemic is affecting their lives. We experience them in a state of emergency at home in their families, during exams and document what happens in their lives afterwards.

The microstates of Europe

A glance at the map speaks volumes: they are easy to overlook. Sandwiched between the continent’s big players, they eke out an existence seemingly without the opportunity to develop, ridiculed for their helplessness. But they know how to preserve their very own traditions and protect the animals and plants that have become rare. Their exceptional location in often extreme mountain or coastal environments provides refuges for endangered species. This series not only celebrates the beauty of nature in the “micros” – it also aims to highlight environmental problems and present solutions.


Each episode features a microstate: Andorra, Liechtenstein, Malta, Monaco and San Marino. They are shaped by their location: Malta at the crossroads of Europe and Africa, Monaco with its “back to the wall” and a view out to sea, Andorra hemmed in between mountains and neighbours, San Marino tolerated by an overpowering Italy and Liechtenstein as a fortress in the border triangle between Germany, Austria and Switzerland and Luxembourg. But the topography also creates the backdrop for grandiose natural spectacles.

The stories of the “Micronesians” tell of the courageous efforts to preserve their natural characteristics and cultural independence.

Episode Liechtenstein: by Anja Glücklich
Episode Monaco: by Michael Gregor
Episode Andorra: by Michael Gregor
Episode Luxembourg: by Susanne Utzt
Episode Malta: by Anne Wigger
Episode San Marino: by Sabine Bier


When Sellotape Came to the North – Of Goo Men and Fish Eyes

The history of the adhesive strip began with a mishap. A self-adhesive wound dressing was to be developed in Paul Beiersdorf’s pharmacy in Hamburg. But the plaster stuck so strongly that it could no longer be removed from the skin. Actually a failure. But Beiersdorf was clever: the adhesive strip was simply processed differently. It was no longer patients who had to buy the plaster, but cyclists: the miracle product was perfect for patching up punctured tyres.

What few people know: Today, Tesa no longer earns most of its money with adhesive products for private customers, but with industry. And the company is profiting from a worldwide trend. Due to the use of plastic – also in the production of car parts and smartphones – more and more is being glued and less and less is being welded or screwed.

5000 employees worldwide work for Tesa, which has its headquarters in Norderstedt near Hamburg. Annual turnover: 1.3 billion euros.

The NDR documentary ” Als der Tesafilm in den Norden kam ” shows how this success story came about and the difficulties the company has to face, which has to launch new products every year in order to survive the competition in the adhesive industry.

Filmmaker Manfred Uhlig and his team follow a number of Tesa employees in their quest for ever more perfect adhesive strips: Lisa Ardente and Deniz Akin research an adhesive to hold car interiors together. Field worker Matheus Zelasny wants to get his foot in the door at the Meyer shipyard for Tesa: When painting machine parts for cruise ships, Tesa and not the competing product will soon be masking pipes. And at Tesa’s Offenburg branch, product optimiser Bernd Zapf is working on “classic” adhesive tape for desks that makes no noise when unrolled. He has to deal with two technical problems in particular: “goo men” and “fish eyes”. Goo men – these are small gel particles in the adhesive mass and “fish eyes” are small air pockets in the finished film. The search for the perfect adhesive tape is a never-ending business.

The healing power of movement – for the back, heart disease and cancer

We all wish for a miracle cure that can heal our major ailments like back pain, heart disease or even cancer. Maybe it already exists and is more commonplace than we think. It costs nothing, is free of artificial additives: Exercise. It is becoming apparent that we are on the verge of a turning point in medical research. concerns accompanies three people with different diseases for six months who dare to experiment: can exercise help in the fight against their suffering, or even have a healing effect?   

Brigitte Weishaupt has been suffering from back pain for seven years. The 56-year-old has been through a real odyssey – every doctor gave a different diagnosis. Nothing helps. Now she is travelling to Sigmaringen. There, a team of experts awaits her with an unusual approach: perhaps it is not the spine that is to blame for Brigitte’s permanent pain, but the connective tissue, her fasciae. And can targeted movement therapy help her then? The doctors are convinced of that. For Brigitte, who actually lives in Holland, Sigmaringen is the last hope. If they can’t help her here, she has promised her husband at home, she will have the operation. Will her hopes be fulfilled and can she avoid a back operation after all through targeted exercise?   

Halide Krasniqi is in her mid-forties and a mother of two. She was recently diagnosed with breast cancer. She is being treated at the National Tumour Centre in Heidelberg. She has six months of chemotherapy ahead of her, and only then will the remaining tumour be operated on. Halide has registered for a special exercise study offered by sports physicians in Heidelberg:  Exercise is not only supposed to help defeat the side effects of the dreaded chemo: “If we could show with our research that exercise had a direct effect on curing cancer, that would be a sensation,” says exercise researcher Karen Steindorf.  Halide is determined to exercise regularly despite the chemo. She hopes that exercise will help her beat cancer.   

Siegfried Rheinwald has a life-threatening heart disease. He has already had a total of six stents. His last heart attack was only two years ago. Today he has an appointment at a Munich practice for heart patients to have a test to see how resilient he is. “Exercise can be prescribed like medicine,” says cardiologist Allessandra Boscheri and recommends special endurance and interval training for the 74-year-old. Not so easy for Siegfried Rheinwald – because he is actually a sports muffin. But because he really wants to take part in a mountain hike especially for heart patients in the summer, he takes it upon himself to train every day.  

In this long-term observation, we accompany three people with different diseases. With them we want to find out: Can regular exercise alleviate their suffering, or can exercise even help them heal?