Biacore targets China with food analysis kits

By Dominique Patton

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags China Marketing

The Swedish supplier of food testing equipment, Biacore
International, is taking over from its sales agent in China and
launching a full business operation in the market.

The company, which opened a new office in Shanghai today, has been selling its life science analysis products in China for several years via the sales network of GE Healthcare.

But its own office will allow it to develop new opportunities in the food market. The Chinese food industry is increasingly demanding higher quality and quality control, with recent scandals heightening consumer awareness of food safety.

Biacore's Qflex kits are designed to test vitamin content in food and beverages and also detect veterinary drug residues in a wide variety of food-related products. The company claims that its assays are faster and more reliable than traditional methods.

Terry Pizzie, vice president of the group's commercial operations, said Biacore sees significant opportunities for pesticide testing in Chinese honey.

"We've had a lot of success with this product in Japan and Europe. The Chinese are a major potential exporter of honey but they have had problems with pesticides. Our product is particularly capable of dealing with the honey matrix, which tends to clog up other techniques available on the market,"​ he told

There will also be opportunities in testing vitamin levels in infant formula, he said.

Around 70 per cent of Biacore's products are sold to academia but some high-end manufacturers are also using its testing kits to guarantee maximum safety.

Pizzie said that the firm is investing in market research to assess which sectors of industry or academia have the purchasing power to invest in its equipment.

"The focus has not been on this sector [food] before but we see huge potential for this market in China,"​ he said.

It could also offer services for testing pathogens in pork, although this equipment would be aimed at large processors testing hundreds of thousands of samples per year.

The new China business will be headed by Peter Lee, the former regional sales manager for GE Healthcare in southern China. He will lead a team of six people responsible for the sales, marketing, applications support and service of Biacore's products in China.

In the outlying areas of the country the firm will use a network of local dealers and distributors.

Related topics Food safety

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