Charles River Laboratories

Charles River Laboratories, Inc.
Type Public (NYSECRL)
Industry Pharmaceutical/Medical devices
Founded 1947
Headquarters Wilmington, Massachusetts
Key people James C. Foster, CEO
Revenue $ 1.2 Billion (FY2009)
Employees 7,500
Website Charles River

Charles River Laboratories, Inc. (NYSECRL) is an American corporation specializing in a broad spectrum of pre-clinical and clinical laboratory services for the pharmaceutical, medical device and biotechnology industries. It is the world's largest supplier of animals for laboratory experimentation and has been described as the "General Motors of the laboratory animal industry".[1] It also supplies assorted biomedical products and research and development outsourcing services for use in the pharmaceutical industry. According to its website, its customers include every major pharmaceutical and biotechnology company in the world, leading academic institutions and government research centers.[2]

The company was founded in 1947 and is headquartered at 251 Ballardvale Street, Wilmington, Massachusetts, in the Boston metropolitan area. The chief executive officer is James C. Foster.

With over 8,500 employees, the company has facilities in Canada, Belgium, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Ireland, China, Japan, the Netherlands, Spain, and the United Kingdom.



The company has been the target of animal rights activists in the UK. It ran Shamrock Farm in West Sussex which closed in 2000 following a 15-month campaign by animal rights activists. It also has a large site at Manston Road, Margate, Kent, where it breeds mice and rats.

On 29 June 2008 in Saint Germain sur l'Arbresle (Rhone - France) an alleged case of arson may have occurred, although the perpetrators have never been identified nor has any group claimed credit.[citation needed]

In May 2008, 32 Cynomolgus primates, also known as crab-eating Macaques, died of overheating at the Charles Rivers Laboratory in Sparks, Nevada after a climate system failure. Based on a whistleblower complaint, animal rights group PETA filed a complaint with the USDA who are investigating the incident.

In August 2008, the Associated Press reported, "A former scientist at an animal testing facility in Nevada where 32 research monkeys were accidentally killed in May claims in a federal lawsuit he was fired partly because he opposed 'cruel and inhumane mistreatment' of animals there."[3]


In October 2003 Charles River Laboratories merged with Inveresk, a UK owned Research Company. The Company was then known as Charles River Laboratories. Inveresk specialised in clinical research and Pre-clinical testing, and their main facilities are in Edinburgh, Scotland. During Late 2009 Charles River sold their Clinical Services Division in Edinburgh to Quotient Bioresearch.

In 2010 Charles River Laboratories attempted to acquire WuXi PharmaTech, a Chinese-based contract research organization, but the offer was withdrawn after strong pressure from key shareholders.

See also


  1. ^ Christensen, Carl Roland. Business Policy: Text and Cases. R.D. Irwin, 1982, p. 54.
  2. ^ "Charles River At A Glance", Charles River Laboratories.
  3. ^ Fired Researcher Claims Animal Cruelty at NV Lab, Associated Press, September 9, 2008.

Further reading

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