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dispatches from Analytica 2014

Eppendorf targets growth in food and beverage

By Joe Whitworth+

16-Apr-2014
Last updated on 16-Apr-2014 at 11:36 GMT

Natascha Weiβ spoke to FQN at Analytica 2014
Natascha Weiβ spoke to FQN at Analytica 2014

Eppendorf has said that it has the intention to be more aware with its products in the food and beverage sector.

Natascha Weiβ, field application specialist of sample handling, said the firm has the intention to be more aware with its products in food and beverage.

“We think that our tubes and pipettes and centrifuges are very well known in labs across the world and academia but nevertheless we offer a complete range of different products which are perhaps not that well known,” she told FoodQualityNews.com at Analytica 2014 in Munich.

“For example our PCR cyclers which may be used for pathogen detection and our detection products which are used for quality control of nucleic acids as well as for ELISA assays.

“Then we have the freezer for storage of bacteria strains or shakers for the incubation of bacteria. So we see a lot of workflows in the field of food and beverage can be covered by Eppendorf products.”

Eppendorf develops and sells instruments, consumables, and services for liquid-, sample-, and cell handling in laboratories worldwide.

Its product range includes pipettes, dispensers, centrifuges, mixers, spectrometers, DNA amplification equipment and freezers, fermentors, shakers and cell manipulation systems.

Public awareness

Weiss said there is a lot of public awareness around food and beverage.

“We have things like horse meat in lasagne all these topics are in the press and so I think it’s a very important topic and there is a growing need for analytics in this field,” she said.

“Especially analytics that is fast like PCR and that gives high quality results for detection. So we try and go further in this field because of the high awareness by the public.

When we talk about analytics, it is important that the results are safe, reproducible and fast. I think we can support high quality results with our products.”

She added that the firm needed to promote its products more in the field so the user in the lab is aware of what they do in the sector.

Product launches on the horizon

Meanwhile, the Eppendorf group reported achieving sales of €502.7m (prior year: €520.2m) in the fiscal year of 2013.

When adjusted for currency effects, sales were slightly lower than in the previous year (-0.4%).

Income from operations (EBIT) decreased to €93.8m (prior year: €101.5m), and 2013 net income declined to €67.5m (prior year: €70.6m).

The drop in sales took place against the background of difficult market conditions that could not be evened out by growth in Europe and Asia, said the firm.

However, the company added more than 100 employees to develop its international sales and service structures.

Expenses for research and development increased to €28.2m (prior year: €27.5m) with the firm attributing this to upcoming product launches and those introduced in 2013.

"In spite of the extremely difficult market situation in segments that are important to our business, in 2013 we continued to invest in our organization, products, infrastructure and brand," said Dr Dirk Ehlers, chairman of the executive board of Eppendorf AG.

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