Foreword by the Management Board
2022 presented the world with major challenges. War has been raging in Europe for over a year. We have been deeply moved by the dramatic consequences for the people in Ukraine. Immediately after the outbreak of the war, Eppendorf SE made a donation to the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) to support medical care for refugees along the escape routes, especially for children. Additionally, Eppendorf’s European employees were given the opportunity to volunteer, thus providing important aid.
Eppendorf also had to face the economic effects of this war, such as sharply rising energy costs and inflation rates, stagnant supply chains and problems in procuring materials. Despite these challenges, we managed to finish this year successfully. The Eppendorf Group continued to grow and was again able to increase its sales. The fact that the company was able to grow sustainably despite the difficult economic environment shows that Eppendorf's products and services are important and are needed more than ever.
“To improve human living conditions.” This is Eppendorf's corporate mission – and it has never been more relevant than today. Eppendorf makes an important contribution in the battle against pandemics and the climate change. It supports scientific work on how to cure serious diseases and to secure food for eight billion people and more in the future. The solutions we need for the future of humanity come from scientists in the laboratory, whom we support with our products and solutions.
Climate change is already affecting and threatening the lives of many people around the world. In order to contribute to mitigating climate change, we set ourselves an ambitious climate target in the year under review: We aim to achieve climate neutrality at our own production and administration sites throughout the Group by 2028. With this in mind, we are shifting our energy supply at our locations worldwide to renewable sources, invest in more energy efficiency for existing and new buildings and reduce the company's greenhouse gas emissions in the transport sector.
As a manufacturing company, we bear a responsibility to rethink the use of materials in our products in order to conserve limited natural resources and leave a planet worth living on for future generations. We have high ambitions: We want to set new standards and make Eppendorf the leading company in the life science industry by using natural resources in the most sustainable way and minimizing waste generated by manufacturing and use.
In the year under review, we started to develop a group-wide approach to resource conservation. Eppendorf already offers products and feedstocks made of recycled or reusable materials. Since 2022, Eppendorf has sample tubes in its portfolio made of 90% second generation plastic granulate, an organic waste product of the food industry, which is thus given a second life. The Eppendorf Group is also making further progress with regard to operational environmental protection. Our environmental management is being certified in accordance with the ISO 14001 standard at more and more locations. In 2022, two additional sites in Germany and the USA received certification.
Global value chains are growing more and more complex, resulting in even greater challenges. We bear responsibility for the people who produce parts of our products. The German Supply Chain Act (LkSG) requires companies to address human rights and environmental concerns. In the year under review, we carried out a first modeled analysis of the risks in our supply chain.
Based on the results, we have developed a strategy to comply with our due diligence duties related to human rights and the environment. We defined responsibilities and processes and in the following year, we will take further suitable measures in accordance with the LkSG.
In this second Sustainability Report of the Eppendorf Group, we inform in detail about this and other progress made by the company in the year under review. Our report is not only intended to document our progress, we also see it as an instrument for dialogue that is intended to provide impetus for exchange with the target groups relevant to Eppendorf. Every suggestion, every hint and constructive criticism helps us to develop Eppendorf further and make it better with the aim of improving human living conditions.
We wish you an informative read!
Eva van Pelt
Co-CEO & Chief Commercial Officer
Dr. Peter Fruhstorfer
Co-CEO & Chief Business Officer
Chief Financial Officer
Dr. Wilhelm Plüster
Chief Technology Officer