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April 04th 2022

Mérieux NutriSciences strengthens its capabilities in South Africa and Spain through two separate acquisitions

Chicago, IL, April 4th, 2022. Mérieux NutriSciences, a global leader in food safety, quality and sustainability, today announced the acquisitions of Hortec Pty Ltd (“Hortec”) in South Africa and Laboratorios Bromatológicos Araba, S.A. (“Aralab”) in Spain. With these new acquisitions, Mérieux NutriSciences is furthering its strategic objectives and strengthening its capabilities by entering the South African pesticide market and reinforcing its geographical presence in Spain.

The first acquisition, Hortec, was established in 1997 and specializes in total crop management through analytical testing and consulting, utilising proprietary hardware and software solutions. Hortec’s analytical services include testing for pesticide residues in fresh produce, other undesirable or regulated residues in various food commodities, as well as fruit maturity indexing.  Their testing services are complemented by expert advice on fruit quality management, harvest windows, weather data, and disease models. Mérieux NutriSciences’ acquisition of Hortec will enable South African customers to benefit from a full range of services at every stage of the value chain. 

The second acquisition, Aralab, was founded in 1989 and operates a 1500 square meter laboratory located in Vitoria-Gasteiz (Basque Country), offering comprehensive microbiology, chemistry and consulting services. Since its establishment 33 years ago, Aralab has grown strongly with a reputation for outstanding quality and has become the trusted service provider for many customers. This acquisition strategically completes Mérieux NutriSciences’ geographic footprint in Spain and adds a presence in the north of the country.

We are excited to have Hortec and Aralab join the Mérieux NutriSciences family through these acquisitions.” said Nicolas Cartier, CEO of Mérieux NutriSciences. “Each company provides Mérieux NutriSciences with exceptional expertise that will enhance our ability to serve our customers at every stage of the value chain. These acquisitions are consistent with our strategy and demonstrate our commitment to expanding Mérieux NutriSciences analytical testing services as well as becoming a full solutions provider to the food industry.

Over the coming months, Hortec and Aralab will be integrated into the worldwide Mérieux NutriSciences network and their respective teams of 60 and 20 employees will join the group’s 8000+ existing talents. 


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About Mérieux NutriSciences:

At Mérieux NutriSciences, we leverage over 50 years of scientific and entrepreneurial expertise to answer food industry needs. Today’s global challenges transform the way food is produced, marketed and consumed, which is why we know our clients need more than reliable analytical results; they need practical and innovative solutions that will contribute to make food systems safer, healthier and more sustainable.

From our initial expertise in microbiology and consulting, we have broadened our scope of scientific specialties into chemistry, education, certification, research, labeling, and sensory in order to offer a complete suite of services to meet our customers’ needs.

Today, we offer comprehensive solutions to support our clients, from product development to market suitability, while contributing to consumers’ health worldwide.  

Present worldwide, we are more than 100 accredited laboratories and a team of over 8,000 committed employees.

We strongly believe that together, we can create solutions to offer our planet:

BETTER FOOD. BETTER HEALTH. BETTER WORLD. global-dev.merieuxnutrisciences.com


About Hortec:

Hortec is a South African company with more than 25 years’ experience in the fruit industry. Previously linked to the research community, we have since grown into a commercial company providing various services to the agriculture and food sectors. Our laboratories are accredited according to ISO 17025:2017 and provide a high-quality professional service which meets the requirements of local and export markets.

The Fruit Quality Services division provides fruit quality and maturity management services to fruit producers, pack houses and exporters for a wide variety of fruit including pome, grape and stone fruit as well as other exotic fruit like persimmons and kiwi fruit

The Analytical Services division provides food safety related testing to the fresh produce and other food producing industries. Our portfolio includes testing for pesticide residues in fresh produce and other undesirable or regulated residues like mycotoxins in various food commodities.

The Weather Services division provides important meteorological data to customers including weather station owners. Our customers have direct access through our web based software (iLeaf) to weather stations, weather forecasts, frost warnings, insect and disease models as well as various climate related temperature models.



About Aralab:

Aralab brings more than 30 years of experience dedicated to the food sector and water testing in the north of Spain, delivering analytical, consulting and training services to all its customers thanks to its committed employees.


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