Charles River Laboratories

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Charles River Laboratories, Inc.
Traded as NYSECRL
Industry Pharmaceutical/Medical devices
Founded 1947
Headquarters Wilmington, Massachusetts
Key people
James C. Foster, CEO
Revenue $ 1.13 Billion (FY2012)
Number of employees
Slogan Every Step of the Way.[2]
Website Charles River

Charles River Laboratories, Inc. is an American corporation specializing in a variety of pre-clinical and clinical laboratory services for the pharmaceutical, medical device and biotechnology industries.[3] 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, major academic institutions and government research centers.[4]

The company was initiated during 1947. The chief executive officer is James C. Foster.

With more than 7,500 employees, the company has facilities in Canada, Belgium, Finland, 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 and US. It owned Shamrock Farm in England's West Sussex which closed during 2000 following a 15-month campaign by animal rights activists.[5][6]

Between 2006-2008, Charles River was cited for 42 violations of the US Animal Welfare Act.[7]

In 2007, two monkeys at the company’s Sparks, Nevada facility had their fingers amputated after they were caught in the wiring of their cages while being moved, and a third monkey suffered a cut to their tail.[8]

In 2008, 32 Cynomolgus primates, also known as crab-eating Macaques, died of overheating at the company's Sparks, Nevada laboratory after a climate system failure. PETA filed a complaint with the USDA over the incident. The following year, a monkey died at the same facility after being left in their cage as it was run through a scalding hot cage washer. For both incidents, Charles River was fined $14,000. The company subsequently closed their Sparks facility.[9][10] [11]

In 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."[12]

Between 2009-2011, four rabbits, four primates and a dog died through actions critics say showed negligence on the part of Charles River.[13]

PETA owns $2,000 worth of shares in the company, enough to introduce formal resolutions regarding animal care during the company’s annual shareholder meeting.[14]


During October 2003 Charles River Laboratories merged with Inveresk, a UK-owned research company. The company was known then 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 its Clinical Services Division in Edinburgh to Quotient Bioresearch company.

During 2010 Charles River Laboratories attempted to acquire WuXi PharmaTech, a China-based contract research organization, but the offer was withdrawn when the deal faced opposition from several large Charles River investors, including Relational Investors, JANA Partners and Neuberger Berman.

Proxy advisory firm RiskMetrics had also recommended that Charles River's shareholders vote against the proposed deal.

In July 2015 the company announced it would acquire Celsis International for $212 million.[15]

See also[edit]


  1. ^
  2. ^
  3. ^ Christensen, Carl Roland. Business Policy: Text and Cases. R.D. Irwin, 1982, p. 54.
  4. ^ "Charles River At A Glance", Charles River Laboratories.
  5. ^ Barnett, Anthony; Ridley, Yvonne (8 May 1999). "Monkey farm 'death trail' exposed". The Guardian. Retrieved 3 September 2015. 
  6. ^ "Protest site monkey farm to close.". Coventry Evening Telegraph. 11 March 2000. Retrieved 3 September 2015. 
  7. ^ Sonner, Scott (7 August 2008). "32 research monkeys die in accident at Nevada lab". Fox News. Retrieved 3 September 2015. 
  8. ^ "Ghastly Slaughter of Research Monkeys Prompts Calls for Oversight". Fox News. Associated Press. 17 March 2010. Retrieved 3 September 2015. 
  9. ^ Sonner, Scott (7 August 2008). "32 research monkeys die in accident at Nevada lab". Fox News. Retrieved 3 September 2015. 
  10. ^ "Ghastly Slaughter of Research Monkeys Prompts Calls for Oversight". Fox News. Associated Press. 17 March 2010. Retrieved 3 September 2015. 
  11. ^ Sonner, Scott (14 December 2012). "Animal deaths spark call for fining of Nevada, other testing labs". Las Vegas Review Journal. Associated Press. Retrieved 3 September 2015. 
  12. ^ Fired Researcher Claims Animal Cruelty at NV Lab, Associated Press, September 9, 2008.
  13. ^ Cullins, Ashley (28 November 2012). "Animal advocates ask USDA to investigate Charles River Labs". KRNV-DT Reno. Retrieved 3 September 2015. 
  14. ^ Cooper, Warren (26 December 2012). "PETA takes on Merck, Pfizer animal testing policies". NJN Publishing. Retrieved 3 September 2015. 
  15. ^