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DuPont Selling Food Safety Diagnostics Unit to Hygiena

December 14, 2016
DuPont is selling its food safety diagnostics unit to Hygiena. Image courtesy of U.S. Dept. of Energy
DuPont is selling its food safety diagnostics unit to Hygiena. Image courtesy of U.S. Dept. of Energy

DuPont’s global food safety diagnostics business will be sold to a Warburg Pincus portfolio company, Hygiena, a microbiology and life science company that focuses on rapid food safety and environmental testing solutions, a DuPont press release announced Wednesday.

Formed by Wilmington, DE-headquartered company in 1992 under the name Qualicon, the unit’s sale includes all business assets of DuPont’s Diagnostics, including the BAX and Ribo Printer systems and related test kits, the business’ sales, R&D, and manufacturing organization, and its in-house production capacity. Hygiena will retain the Qualicon name, DuPont said.

“The combination of DuPont Diagnostics and Hygiena will create a broad food safety diagnostics company that can better serve our customers,” said Steve Nason, Hygiena’s chief executive officer, in a statement. “The combined company’s microbiology products will cover the full manufacturing process, from in-process environmental tests to finished product tests. In addition, the combination increases our customer service presence in the United States and internationally, which will allow us to further enhance our research and development efforts and support to our combined customer base.”

DuPont’s Diagnostics unit produces microbial detection and monitoring products that can identify and characterize pathogens and other unwanted organisms in food ingredients. The business’ BAX pathogen detection system is used in food manufacturing, food quality laboratories, and by governments globally, according to DuPont.

Hygiena said it will continue to invest in product development “to continue the DuPont Diagnostics history of market-leading innovation,” and DuPont said the sale will allow the company to pursue other avenues for growth.

“This transaction is a strategic business decision that will allow DuPont Nutrition & Health to focus on growth opportunities that are more closely aligned with our core portfolio of specialty food ingredients,” Matthias Heinzel, president of DuPont Nutrition & Health, said in the release. “We believe that the Diagnostics business is an excellent strategic fit with Hygiena. Together they will be better able to offer greater opportunities for growth and investment in innovative solutions for the global pathogen testing industry.”

Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. DuPont said it expects the transaction to close in the first quarter of 2017.

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