• Sustainability

    Environmentally Friendly Molecular Biology

Sustainability is in our DNA!   

Ecological, economical, and social responsibility have been a focus of BioEcho since the moment of our foundation in 2016. EchoLUTION technology drastically reduce the amount of plastic waste and hazardous reagents produced during nucleic acid extraction, and sustainable management has also always been a core value at BioEcho. That is why we see ourselves as a pioneer company to introduce sustainability into modern molecular biology.

       

Our green mission

Our green mission is to help scientists become more sustainable in the laboratory and to push ourselves to become as green as possible as a company.

This means we see sustainability as a holistic approach, not only offering greener products, but also living sustainability in every aspect of our business. 

We are only at the beginning of our journey: 
We need to acquire knowledge, overcome current limitations, and learn from others, but we are ready and excited to do so. Find out more about our approaches in the following sections.

Products

 Discover what makes our extraction kits sustainable

Business Practices

See how each department contributes to our green mission

Company Initiatives

Get inspired by our actions and commitments and find out more about our company culture

“I enjoy ordering products much more when the company cares about our environment. So, I was very pleased to learn that BioEcho reduces product packaging and uses sustainable materials wherever possible.”


Evelina Satzinger
Molecular Biologist, Klinikum Fürth, Germany

Products

Laboratories produce 5.5 billion tons of plastic every year and consume enormous amounts of energy. A deep freezer (-80 °C), for example, requires as much energy as a family household!


This demonstrates the magnitude of the impact laboratories have on the environment and that, by addressing these issues, scientists and companies can make a big contribution to climate protection and sustainability. And we want to prove that modern molecular biology can be both sustainable and innovative! How our EchoLUTION technology for nucleic acid extraction is a sustainable choice is explained by the 3 Rs: Reduce – Reuse – Recycle

Reduce

  • Up to 70% less plastic waste 
  • Due to fewer steps needed compared to silica methods, fewer plastic consumables are thrown out after the extraction process 
  • Plastic bags and packaging materials are reduced to a minimum. The remaining bags in the kits are made from biodegradable bioplastic (polylactic-acid, PLA), which is based on the renewable resource starch instead of oil-based plastics 
  • Smaller kits free up shelf space in your laboratory 
  • Fewer hazardous reagents are used in the kits, contributing to user health, minimal health risks, and reduced disposal costs 

Reuse

  • The conditioning plate can be reused several times
  • For this reason, the plate is not part of the kit and can be purchased separately

Recycle

  • Carton boxes are made from 70% recycled paper and are 100% recyclable (water-based ink)
  • Plates are made from 100% polypropylene and are easily recyclable (consult with your waste manager for regional regulations and recycle only decontaminated material)

Figure 1

Comparison of the theoretical worldwide plastic waste from nucleic acid extraction kits when using BioEcho EchoLUTION Kits versus silica-based kits1,2.

Figure 2:

Comparison of the theoretical worldwide disposal costs for nucleic acid extraction kits when using BioEcho EchoLUTION Kits versus silica-based kits1,3.


Sources:
(1) Nucleic Acid Isolation and Purification Market [...] - Global Forecast to 2020. marketsandmarkets, November 2015
(2) Weight of plastic and regents of a 50 reaction kit: each have been set into relation to the worldwide number of reactions performed 2020 and extrapolated
(3) Kind of lab waste and respective prices 2019, Vienna waste management (Wienenergie)

Business Practices

We see sustainability as a holistic approach. Therefore, every department contributes to an environmentally-friendly business.


Every department at BioEcho fulfills different roles and tasks, but each one can contribute to our green mission.

Marketing and Sales

  • Fewer printed marketing materials 
  • Sustainable print materials with 100% recycled paper and plant-based ink 
  • User manuals and instructions for use as online version only 
  • Climate-neural marketing materials 
  • Water-based ink on carton boxes and labels 
  • No environmentally unfriendly finishing of marketing materials 
  • Reusable trade-show systems 
  • Fairphones for our sales force
  • Green website hosting 

Supply Chain management

  • Detailed questionnaire to find the best suitable supplier in terms of distance, fairness, social responsibility, reliability and more
  • Preference for suppliers from Germany and Europe to reduce the carbon footprint
  • Replacement of plastic bedding with paper-based bedding


Manufacturing

  • Reusable kit components can be purchased separately to reduce unnecessary waste 


Research and Development (R&D)

  • Replacement of toxic reagents with environmentally friendly alternatives 


Purchasing

  • Collective purchasing of consumables 
  • Suppliers requested to reduce unnecessary packaging materials 
  • Batch orders preferred 
  • Energy-efficient instruments 


Company Initiatives


Integrating sustainability into our daily lives has become normal, but why hasn't it in the business environment?


The impact we have as companies, employees, PIs or scientists is much bigger compared to our private lives. So we at BioEcho decided “Let’s change this now, let’s make a difference!”

Get inspired by our actions


Sustainability Team 

We started 2022 with an internal sustainability kick-off meeting to brainstorm how we can become greener in various areas, such as the office, supply chain management and our laboratories.


As a final step, we have formed a sustainability team that will decide which ideas to implement first and which will be the driving force to implement the changes. Every employee is welcome to join the team or to suggest new ideas and initiatives.


THANK YOU!

We thank our customers and collaboration partners by sending them a ThankU.

For every ThankU sent, the organization behind it supports a good cause of our choice, be it planting trees, cleaning the ocean or protecting wildlife. For instance, every digital Christmas card sent to our customers in 2021 contained a ThankU.


Action-day for employees 

Action-day for employees

As part of our corporate social responsibility (CSR) and at the initiative by one of our employees, our management has allowed to use one day per year for a good cause or social activity. This could be participating in Fridays-for-future demonstrations, picking ip trash in the park, organizing gifts for the elderly or children, and much more. 


Watch out for our LinkedIn posts!

Employee benefits

Discounted job tickets to allow sustainable transportation by public transport

Weekly sports program and monthly massages for free 

Regular social events like online cooking or summer parties 

Free water, coffee, tea, and regional fruits 

We want to do everything we can to become as sustainable as possible

We know this is an ambitious goal and we will need to keep changing and improving, but we believe that this is the only way to slow down climate change and contribute to the 1.5 °C goal set by the Paris agreement. We also think that sustainability is a topic, where everyone should stand together and share knowledge wherever possible. If you have any suggestions or comments, feel free to reach out.

Get in touch!