22 March 2010
The United Nations "World Water Day", held annually on March 22nd, aims to draw attention to one of the biggest environmental problems facing the human race today - a lack of access to sufficient, clean drinking water for almost 40% of the World's population. Eurofins Scientific is a global market leader in environmental laboratory testing and is a key player in the development of safe drinking water for increasing numbers of people: in terms of geographic and population coverage, in terms of more than a century of experience and in terms of cutting edge development of methods of testing.
Today, 1.1 billion people around the world rely on unsafe drinking water sources and more than 2.6 billion people lack access to improved sanitation. Every year 1,500 cubic kilometres of waste water is produced and every day more than two million tons of waste enter the hydrologic cycle. While waste and wastewater can be reused productively for energy and irrigation, in developing countries about 90% of raw sewage and 70% of untreated industrial water is being discharged untreated, because of lack of regulations and resources. Waterborne diseases cause the death of 1.5 million children each year.
With its various bio-analysis services Eurofins contributes significantly to securing water quality across the globe. 8,000 employees at 150 research sites in 30 countries are dedicated to the preservation of the safety and quality of things that humans consume and more than 40,000 testing methods are available for these analyses. Its water quality analysis equipment is capable of performing all relevant microbiological and chemical testing for ground, mineral drinking and waste water. Eurofins conducts more than 3 million water tests per annum, ensuring the water quality of a population coverage of 831 million* people. The network of laboratories serves not only the entire population of Europe but in particular some major cities in each country: for example Stockholm, Copenhagen, Oslo, Stuttgart, Clermont-Ferrand and Southampton. The Group can draw on industrial scale effects in its state-of-the-art production laboratories and has also built up a local network for sampling and microbiology analysis.
Eurofins has accumulated vast experience in its testing capabilities in many countries. In particular at Steins in Denmark, Institut Prof. Dr Jaeger in Germany and Institute Louise Blanquet in France, Eurofins has laboratories that have histories extending up to 150 years. The benefit to Eurofins, and thus to the population, is that this network is gathering the best skills from all over Europe. Recognition for this experience and level of competence is the fact that Eurofins acts as the National Reference Laboratory for water testing in Denmark. In terms of water testing and regulation, where Scandinavia has shown the way, the rest of the World has followed.
Eurofins also sees a responsibility to continue developing groundbreaking technologies for water analysis. In Scandinavia, as a result of being first-movers in Government-led environmental regulation, coupled with high levels of scientific exploration in this area, tests and methodologies developed there are now replicated throughout Europe. This is particularly the case in the following major areas:The testing methods developed in Denmark for pesticides and their metabolites are increasingly being used as the standard throughout Europe. As mentioned above, as Eurofins is the National Reference Laboratory in Denmark, it has played a major role in developing and implementing that standard. Eurofins' laboratories in Sweden are pioneering the testing capabilities for drug residues in water. The transfer of active drug residues and hormones into the water system can directly affect the organisms living in that water but ultimately can be harmful to humans. At present the Group can test for 96 different active substances in water down to 0.1 nanogrammes per litre. These tests can now be performed in Eurofins' laboratories in Sweden, Denmark and Germany and samples are received from all over Europe. Given that medical molecules are broadly shared throughout the world and drug residues and hormones are becoming more of a concern, the Group has the capacity to roll-out these tests across all markets. Eurofins has also produced other unique screening tools such as TerrAttesT, the proprietary test-kit for soil and water analysis, which is designed to be easily handled and allows for fast data evaluation of over 200 contaminants, including volatile and semi-volatile compounds. The Group has a leading global position in testing for dioxins and persistent organic pollutants (POP's), in particular PCBs. A growing market for testing for radio-activity levels in water, as this becomes increasingly relevant in the search for future energy sources
UN-Water has chosen "Communicating Water Quality Challenges and Opportunities" as its theme for World Water Day 2010 in order to raise awareness of the problem of water quality at a political level so that water quality considerations are made alongside those of water quantity. The Eurofins Group is committed to supporting this initiative wherever there is a will to implement the standards required. Among Eurofins clients who currently aspire to the provision of high quality water supplies are industrial companies, government authorities, environmental consultants, NGOs and private individuals.
Eurofins will therefore commit to:organising seminars with public or private domestic decision makers to share international experience and make common progress towards European and global progress make unique offerings for private customers, public bodies and organizations to further strengthen water quality around the World
* estimated population of Europe, source Wikipedia
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Notes for the editor:
Eurofins - a global leader in bio-analysis
Eurofins Scientific is a life sciences company operating internationally to provide a comprehensive range of analytical testing services to clients from a wide range of industries including the pharmaceutical, food and environmental sectors.
With 8,000 staff in more than 150 laboratories across 30 countries, Eurofins offers a portfolio of over 40,000 reliable analytical methods for evaluating the authenticity, origin, safety, identity, composition and purity of biological substances and products. The Group is committed to providing its customers with high quality services, accurate results in time and, if requested, expert advice by its highly qualified staff.
The Eurofins Group is the world leader in food testing and one of the global market leaders in pharmaceuticals and environmental testing. It intends to pursue its dynamic growth strategy and expand both its technology portfolio and its geographic reach. Through R&D and acquisitions, the Group draws on the latest developments in the field of biotechnology to offer its clients unique analytical solutions and the most comprehensive range of testing methods.
As one of the most innovative and quality oriented international players in its industry, Eurofins is ideally positioned to support its clients' increasingly stringent quality and safety standards and the demands of regulatory authorities around the world.
The shares of Eurofins Scientific are listed on the NYSE Euronext Paris (ISIN FR0000038259) and Frankfurt (WKN 910 251) Stock Exchanges (Reuters EUFI.PA, Bloomberg ERF FP).
This press release contains forward-looking statements and estimates that involve risks and uncertainties. The forward-looking statements and estimates contained herein represent the judgement of Eurofins Scientific as of the date of this release. These forward-looking statements are not guarantees for future performance, and the forward-looking events discussed in this release may not occur. Eurofins Scientific disclaims any intent or obligation to update any of these forward-looking statements and estimates. All statements and estimates are made based on the data available to the Company as of the date of publication, but no guarantee can be made as to their validity.Information non réglementée
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