King Charles got a fit of the giggles as he attempted to make traditional German cheese today.
He was visiting Brodowin Farm in Brandenburg, a pioneering organic operation, when he was persuaded to don a coat and plastic overshoes to join staff in the dairy.
The monarch was invited to help spread cheese curd into moulds. ‘I’ll do my best,’ he grinned.
But he couldn’t help but laugh as the mixture began pouring quicker than he expected out of four metal funnels and he frantically tried to start pushing it into the moulds.
‘I need longer arms,’ he chortled.
He started helplessly pushing the cured as forcefully as he could, laughing as he did.
‘Well they do say it hand-made,’ he smiled.
King Charles III (2nd R) shakes hands with soldiers of the German-British Pioneer Bridge Battalion military unit in Finowfurt
Charles laughed after he was beaten at table football by Ukrainian refugees
The King was given a guided tour of the organic farm in Brandenburg before he got to work
The cheese is a traditional German sliced cheese, coloured naturally with carrot.
Earlier the king watched some of the staff also pack butter and looked mischievously as he spotted reporters also wearing full protective gear.
The king, who was accompanied Brodowin owners and managers Ludolf and Katja von Maltzan as well as German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier, had planned to see some of the farm’s baby calves living in special calf igloos that are more hygienic and stop the spread of illness.
But unfortunately a storm erupted, with heaving rain, thunder and lightening, and the King had to rush into an open sided building instead.
There he was presented with a magnificent cake in the shape of a crown lying on a purple cushion in honour of his coronation.
The white chocolate and Victoria sponge cake took chef Antje Neumann 21 hours to make and weighed ten kilos.
The king cut a slice and tasted it. ‘This is brilliant, it must have taken you weeks. This is seriously good cake.’
Jovial German President Mr Steinmeier turned to the king and said: ‘It might be the model for your crown!’
Afterwards he met with local organic farmers as well as supermarket representatives to talk about their efforts to reduce the environmental impacts of agriculture through organic farming, including their approach to reducing food waste via direct marketing.
The king was in his element, chatting animatedly to the fellow organic enthusiastic, including one man whom he has been conversing with for 40 years.
‘Thank you for everything you have done to further organic farming and to protect people and and nature,’ he was told.
His Majesty was also shown a soil sample from a nearby site to learn more about history of the land and its ability to store carbon dioxide and see examples of products such as paper and mugs made out of grass from protected grasslands.
During the visit he was accompanied by Prince Bernhard, a hereditary prince of Baden and grandson of Prince Philip’s sister, Theodora. Like Charles he is a keen organic farmer and the two men have visited each other’s properties.
Ökodorf Brodowin organic farm, was established in 1991 from an East German agricultural production cooperative to maintain jobs and help reduce environmental impacts.
It is now one of the largest ‘Demeter’ certified farms, committed to biodynamic agriculture involving systematic crop rotation and targeted green fertilisers to return to the soil what has been taken from it.
The 2300-hectare farm produces vegetables, dairy products, flax and sunflower oil, fresh meat and sausages.
It is just one of the royal couple’s many engagements on day two of their tour which has seen them visit food markets, inspect military equipment and visit victims of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s war.
The pair supported work in the country to care for the 1million-plus Ukrainians who have fled there since Russia’s invasion as well as meeting members of the German and British Amphibious Engineer Battalion to view a static display of some of the Battalion’s key equipment.
In interesting scenes, the King watched as troops took part in a static demonstration of the M3 Amphibious Bridge which was erected over the Oder-Havel canal and then driven over by the unit’s BOXER Mechanised Infantry Vehicle (M.I.V.).
The King then walked over the bridge in Finowfurt to meet members of the joint German and British battalion that was formed in 2021.
His Majesty also toured the Tegel Refugee Centre in Berlin where he met some of the residents and heard their heartbreaking stories just an hour after telling the Bundestag of the ‘unimaginable suffering’ in their homeland.
The King told Ukrainian families fleeing Putin‘s war ‘I’m praying for you’ as he visited a refugee centre – where thousands now live in tents and marquees. They are also battling a chicken pox outbreak.
Separately the Queen Consort was visiting the Refugio House community centre, a meeting place for locals and new Berlin residents, including refugees.
Charles, 74, surprised refugees who had only just arrived to register at Berlin’s old Tegel Airport. He laughed as he lost a game of table football in the centre’s play area and paused to shake hands and hear stories of refugees who had fled the war zone.
He was given a tour of the Ukraine Arrival Centre by German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier.
On several occasions Charles clasped his hands together and told refugees ‘I’m praying for you.’
Speaking afterwards through a translator pre-school Olena Ochkiviska, 40, said: ‘I told him everyone was caring after us and they are working on the negatives.
‘He said that he was praying for us all. I’m the luckiest lady in the world.’
Stopping to speak to families registering after just arriving, Charles said: ‘Are you sleeping here?’
He also asked: ‘Was it very difficult to get out of Ukraine? Are you pleased to be here?’
He also played table football in the refugee centre’s games room.
He said: ‘I remember trying this when I was younger.’
But when he conceded a goal, he replied: ‘Amazing, two hands you are the experts.’
Kleopatra Tummler, operations manager of the refugee centre, who also worked 15 years as Take That’s tour manager, said afterwards: ‘He really showed interest in everyone’s stories.
‘He learned that some said there were not enough cellars in Ukraine for people to hide.
‘There was a family who had just arrived and registered here who he stopped to talk to.’
Sascha Langenbach, spokesman for the State Office for Refugee Affairs, said afterwards: ‘We are overwhelmed by the empathic way in which the King approached both the refugees and organisers working here.
‘We do have many refugees suffering from illnesses like cancer and needing specialist treatment.
‘He was so interested and shook everyone’s hands and asked where they came from and found out about their experiences.
‘It was really special and we didn’t expect His Majesty to do this.’
He was seen getting his hands dirty but with little success if his facial expressions are anything to go by
King Charles visited the Brodowin organic farm during a thunderstorm
The monarch looked at a cake made especially for his visit in Brodowin ecovillage
The King watched as a M3 Amphibious Bridge was constructed by British and German troops
King Charles III during a visit to the refugee arrival centre at Tegel airport, Berlin, as part of a state visit to Germany
Camilla, Queen Consort, went to Refugio Berlin and spoke with Diana Strassheim and her baby Kuno
Britain’s King Charles III (C) and Berlin’s Mayor Franziska Giffey (2R) visit the Ukraine Arrival Centre Tegel
Camilla, Queen Consort visits the Refugio House community centre and meets some of the House’s residents and groups
The Ukraine Arrival Centre opened as a refuge on March 20 and the majority are women and children.
Up to 10,000 people were arriving daily in Berlin by train at the outbreak of the war last year.
Most stay in temporary marquee accommodation before they move into more suitable longer-term homes.
Since last spring, two unused terminal buildings have housed refugees.
During the winter two large heated tents were set up on the tarmac.
The third terminal building was used as a registration center.
The old airport was first used for the 1948 Berlin Airlift but in October 2020 and decommissioned a year later.
It was used as a Covid-19 vaccination centre before reopening as a refugee shelter last March.
The visit came around an hour after he became the first British monarch to address the Bundestag in Berlin – and did almost the entire historic speech in German – as his state visit went from strength to strength.
There were nods of approval and several rounds of applause from MPs as His Majesty spoke about the ‘friendship’ between ‘our nations’, and at times the royal looked emotional to be there.
Charles also spoke movingly about the Queen’s love for Germany and how he was moved by the tributes from its people after she died last September. He added: ‘This friendship meant so much to my beloved mother, the Queen.’
The King praised Germany for standing up for Ukraine after Russia’s invasion, saying it ‘threatens’ Europe’s security but that he was ‘encouraged’ by the ‘unity’ shown by Britain, Germany and other nations.
He also joked about the rivalry between the two countries played out on the football pitch, including the Lionesses’ recent defeat of Germany’s women at Euro 2022.
There was also an ovation as he spoke of the ability of the nations to laugh ‘with and at each other’ and their shared love of sport, literature and music, referencing The Beatles and Kraftwerk.
He said: ‘In just a few weeks’ time, the astonishing music of Georg Friedrich Handel – who was born a German, and died British – will once again soar through Westminster Abbey at the Coronation, just as it has at every Coronation since that of my seven times great grandfather, King George II, in 1727′.
But there was no mention of Brexit, only Germany and Britain working together on net zero and renewable energy including wind farms, a personal passion for the King.
Britain’s King Charles addresses the members of the lower house of parliament, the Bundestag, and received laughter and rapturous applause as he spoke in German
King Charles and Camilla, Queen Consort sign the guest book as Bundestag President Baerbel Bas watches on this morning
King Charles III addresses members of the German Bundestag at the Reichstag Building
Speaking in both German and English, Charles, 74, said he was honoured to renew the bonds of friendship between the two countries as he spoke to dignitaries and German MPs.
He also paid a touching tribute to his mother, thanking Germany for the ‘deep sympathies’ offered by the German people after the Queen’s passing.
The King referred to his mother’s first visit to Germany in 1965, when the continent was still ‘scarred’ by war.
And he noted that, since he last spoke in the Bundestag, the scourge of war has returned to Europe.
He said: ‘The unprovoked invasion of Ukraine has inflicted the most unimaginable suffering on so many innocent people.
‘Countless lives have been destroyed, freedom and human dignity have been trampled in the most brutal way [and] the security of Europe has been threatened.’
But he added that the world has ‘not merely stood by’ and that ‘we can take heart from our unity’.
‘Germany and the United Kingdom have shown vital leadership,’ he said.
‘As Europe’s two largest donors to Ukraine, we have responded decisively. We have taken decisions that might previously have seemed unimaginable.’
Earlier today The King has taken home some German cheese and his wife Camilla chomped on dairy delicacies and honey as the royal couple were greeted by more huge crowds in Berlin today.
On day two of his historic state visit, the British monarch was greeted warmly by Chancellor Olaf Scholz as he arrived at the Federal Chancellery building.
He and the Queen Consort Camilla then met up at the city’s Wittenbergplaztz Food Market.
The royal couple also spoke to a range of local business owners who discussed the history of the market and the produce.
Charles shared a number of big laughs with the crowds and traders, who were keen for the couple to try their sausages, cheese, honey and fresh fruit and vegetables.
Charles shared jokes with the MPs, including about football and music
King Charles III points and laughs as he visits a food market on Day two of his royal tour
Camilla waves and Charles is handed some juice at a stall this morning
Berlin’s Mayor Franziska Giffey, Britain’s King Charles and Camilla the Queen Consort visit a farmer’s market on Wittenbergplatz today
The Queen Consort gives a thumbs up during a visit to the Wittenbergplatz market where she grabbed some honey
An armed policeman scans the building surrounding the market
The King and Queen Consort‘s state visit to Germany, the first of Charles’ reign, began on Wednesday with a ceremonial greeting at Berlin‘s iconic Brandenburg Gate.
The monarch was meant to be in France earlier in the week but it was called off by President Macron due to ongoing protests over his pension reforms.
During a speech at a state banquet staged in his honour on Wednesday evening, Charles pledged to ‘strengthen the connections’ between the UK and Germany as he paid tribute to the ‘enduring value’ of the two nations’ relationship.
Germany has welcomed more than a million Ukrainian refugees seeking sanctuary after Russia invaded their homeland and Charles will tour the Tegel Refugee Centre to meet some of the group.
Separately the Queen Consort will visit the Refugio House community centre, a meeting place for locals and new Berlin residents, including refugees.
Britain’s Camilla, Queen Consort (L), and Berlin’s governing mayor Franziska Giffey (R), greet wellwishers
Camilla samples some honey
An armed police officer stands guard as Britain’s King Charles and Camilla, the Queen Consort visit a farmer’s market
King Charles’ trip to Germany has been a massive hit.
On an impromptu walkabout, the monarch was affectionately offered a crown – a paper one – on the first official engagement of his State Visit to Germany yesterday.
He was undertaking a walkabout at the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin when he came across a number of well-wishers who were wearing ‘Burger King’ crowns given away by the fast food giant.
One man took his off and tried to press it into the king’s hands, saying politely: ‘This is for you, if you want it.’
Charles smiled broadly and said: ‘I’m alright!’ He, of course, has a number of real ones at home. He also grinned and declined another crown from a woman who said: ‘I have a present for you’.
The King was also seen bending down to pick up a man’s cap before returning it back to him, with the grateful well-wisher thanking him and bowing.
Charles and Camilla – who posed for selfies with fans – were formally greeted at the Brandenburg Gate by Germany’s president Frank-Walter Steinmeier and wife Elke Budenbender before the national anthems were played.
In a sign of the importance placed on the visit, the couple were given the first full ceremonial and military welcome at the landmark since the Second World War. Even Queen Elizabeth II, who also visited Berlin for her last ever State Visit abroad in 2015, wasn’t afforded that honour.
They had been due to fly in from Paris but the first part of their visit to France was cancelled at the 11th hour by President Macron amid scenes of huge civil unrest in his country. It will be re-arranged at a later date.
German Chancellor Olaf Scholz welcomes Britain’s King Charles III at the chancellery in Berlin this morning
Charles skips from his royal car as he begins day two of his historic trip to Germany
Charles and Scholz speak at the Chancellery in Berlin
King Charles and Queen Consort Camilla are welcomed at the Brandenburg Gate by German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier and his wife Elke Buedenbender
The King spoke for the first time this afternoon about cancelling the visit, telling a reporter it was ‘very sad’.
In Berlin, Queen Consort sported a colourful turquoise coat and dress by Bruce Oldfield and a jaunty hat by Philip Treacy.
And in a beautifully personal detail, she was sporting a brooch that belonged to Queen Elizabeth, given to the late monarch by Queen Mary on her confirmation in 1942.
The King’s foresight on climate change was hailed by President Steinmeier at a green energy reception held at Schloss Bellevue.
The monarch followed a translation of the President’s remarks in a booklet and smiled warmly as Mr Steinmeier repeated them in English.
He also thanked the King for making his first State Visit to Germany, saying: ‘This visit, Your Majesty’s very first trip abroad as the new King, is a tremendous personal gesture – and for that I would like to express my heartfelt thanks. I am looking forward to the coming days and to the many opportunities we will have to exchange views.’
The monarch was told that this year work will begin on an undersea power cable between the Isle of Grain in Kent and Wilhelmshaven in Germany, with the President adding: ‘This first direct energy link highlights how closely Germany and the United Kingdom are working together to make our economies climate-neutral.
‘I regard this as an encouraging example – just as Your Majesty’s visit to Germany is encouraging.’