Labcon North America was founded in Marin County, California in 1959. Our original name was Ways and Means, Inc. The name given to the company then reflected the newness of the plastics industry. We were founded to literally find the "Ways and Means" to make plastic products. We made several small toys, vials for salt tablets, contact lense cases, cassette tape cartridges, and cigarette filters. Now over 50 years later we have grown to supply more than 800 products to labs all over the world. We make more than a billion products every year. In those days Labcon focused on innovative disposable plastics and combined them with the highest levels of quality and service. Labcon developed the first hinged pipet tip rack in 1985. This focus helped Labcon grow at a time when the use of disposables exploded over fears of contamination from even the most minute traces of chemicals left over from the washing of glassware. Although Labcon is a major supplier of disposable products to laboratories, there had been growing concern inside and outside the company that disposable plastics are too wasteful. From this understanding Labcon in 1995 began to develop products that were unlike anything else the laboratory industry had seen. These innovative products incorporate concepts of "eco-efficiency" using less packaging, recycled plastics, and refillable packages. Many of these new products have won patents and become market leaders. A particularly good example is the Pagoda® pipet tip reloading system. This product eliminates 90% of the packaging and waste in typical products of this kind and has spawned a multitude of imitations. The patented Pagoda® system has been a very visible product and has led Labcon into partnerships with several companies to develop even more sustainable solutions for consumable labware. At the same time that Labcon was working to eliminate waste in the general laboratory many laboratories began to increase their use of robotics. More automated processing, and High Throughput Screening (HTS) consumes labware, and generates waste, at astonishing rates. Labcon has responded by manufacturing a line of robotics to deliver unique reduced waste labware. These low waste products; both standard and robotic, are marketed under our Earth Friendly® banner.
Our mission is to provide you with the highest quality and overall value. Our goal is to exceed your expectations. Labcon North America is a wholly owned subsidiary company of Helena Laboratories of Beaumont, Texas, U.S.A. As a privately held corporation Helena Laboratories does not disclose financial results.
Located in the San Francisco bay area, we enjoy a diverse, educated, and experienced staff of about 200 people. Our primary operations are centered in a 125,000 square foot (11,600 square meter) facility in Petaluma, California, U.S.A. We develop, prototype, and test our products to work in labs all over the world. We built our own "in-house" research laboratory in 1996 to help us better understand the uses for our products. This lab has all the same equipment our end users have in their labs and can duplicate the conditions found most commonly in the lab and in procedures. We were first in our industry to make this commitment, one that makes products from Labcon more than just disposables. This kind of innovation continues today as we move ahead into an era of carbon footprint reduction.
Our original facility shown at left was located in San Rafael, California. We relocated to a new larger site in Petaluma, California in 2003. This move allowed us to better focus all our operations into a more modern structure with better logistics for our customers. We also had expanded space for a better lab and offices. Many of our employees already lived in Sonoma County so this move shortened their daily commute.