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From a modest beginning in the small town of Mantua, Italy, Copan Italia was founded in 1979 by the late Giorgio Triva. Copan Italia began as a family-owned trading company distributing various laboratory products, but also manufacturing laboratory commodity products, like plastic pipets. In 1982, Daniele Triva, Giorgio Triva’s son, assumed the position as General Manager of Copan Italia, which was an important milestone in the history of Copan. As a Chemical Engineer with a specialty in Biotechnology Processing, Daniele, working with his father, redefined internal processes and began to move the company in the direction of new technological innovation in preanalytics. Copan continues to be family owned and managed by Daniele and Stefania Triva. The company now has a strong commitment and a high investment in the field of “COllection and Preservation for ANalysis” just like COPAN acronym suggests.
In 1994, Daniele Triva and Norman Sharples, a trained microbiologist, founded Copan Diagnostics, Inc, a subsidiary in California, USA as part of Copan’s international expansion plan. Copan Diagnostics, Inc. was established to develop a close connection with the clinical microbiology scientific community in North and South America and to bring innovation in the pre-analytical phase of diagnostics. Additionally, it was developed to foster relationships with the business community to establish the most efficient distribution channels for Copan products to users in North and South America, as well as to manage packaging and plastic molding operations to meet specific needs of the North American clientele.
As Copan Italia grew and expanded, it relocated in 1998 to a 100,000 square foot custom built and state-of-the-art facility in Brescia, Italy, where all the functions of product research and development, product design, mold construction, equipment automation, manufacture and production assembly are fully integrated. In 2009, Copan purchased an additional 150,000 square feet building, of which only 70,000 square feet are currently occupied, leaving ample space for future expansion.
Copan’s approach to manufacturing is to control the entire process, which has allowed it the ability to produce the best product in the market and to achieve its goal of constant technical and quality improvement at a competitive price.
Nowadays, Copan is the leading manufacturer of bacteriology swabs, viral transport media (VTM) and molecular systems in the world. Its innovations in pre-analytics include patented FLOQSwab™, Eswab™, and UTM™, which have been proven to advance the quality of traditional and contemporary microbiology assays through improved fluid-dynamics. Commitment to innovation in specimen processing lead to the 2008 launch of WASP: Walk-Away Specimen Processor, which enables the automatic planting and streaking of all types of bacteriological samples. In addition to innovative products, the company has an extensive line of traditional laboratory consumables, including inoculation loops and needles, spreaders, and transfer pipettes, as well as a line of SRK™ environmental swab systems and products for Forensic applications.
Copan’s manufacturing headquarters operates three shifts 24/7 producing over 100 million bacteriology transport swabs, 400 million transfer pipets, 250 million calibrated plastic inoculations loops, 90 million viral transport systems (UTM™) and 180,000 million FLOQSwab™ per year. Everyone at Copan understands the value of their work and is passionate about it. A testimony to this commitment is the fact that all of the original employees that joined Copan in 1979 still work at the company. At every level within Copan, creativity is encouraged and a tremendous spirit of entrepreneurial creativity exists without limits, and it is this atmosphere that empowers Copan’s 250 employees to meet challenges, to be innovative and to deliver exciting solutions for the customer. Copan’s position as a privately owned company means it has the flexibility to drive success through rapidly responding to customers’ needs. Everybody at Copan feels as part of a family with a common goal, able to make a difference and proud to have ownership of their job.
From its humble beginnings to its current position as a global market leader in collection and transport systems, Copan will continue to invest in science and technology to continually improve its knowledge to offer the most innovative and technically diverse product line in its niche market.


July 30 - August 1, 2013
AACC - Clinical Lab Expo
Houston, TX – USA

September 11-14, 2013
ECV - European Congress of Virology
Lyon, France

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list of events 


Evaluation of Swabs, Transport Media, and Specimen Transport Conditions for Optimal Detection of Vir
The study cited in the article the use of Copan products shown as acceptable collection and transport devices for use during a pandemic for PCR testing.

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