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Vestergaard Frandsen Announces Launch of LifeStraw(R) Family

Instant Microbiological Purifier Provides Homemade Drinking Water with

'Potential to Save Lives and Reduce Suffering on a Massive Scale'

WASHINGTON, Feb. 7 /PRNewswire/ -- Vestergaard Frandsen, a European company developing and selling disease control textiles, today announced the launch of LifeStraw(R) Family, a new point-of-use product designed to allow consumers in the developing world to create safe and healthy homemade drinking water.

"I am thrilled to announce today's launch of LifeStraw(R) Family, a revolutionary product that has the potential to transform the lives of millions of people in the developing world -- especially young children, pregnant women and people living with HIV and AIDS -- by allowing them to create their own homemade drinking water," said Mikkel Vestergaard Frandsen, the President and CEO of Vestergaard Frandsen. "The need for LifeStraw(R) Family is enormous. Currently, more than a billion people lack access to safe drinking water, and our product has the potential to save lives and reduce suffering on a massive scale."

LifeStraw(R) Family is an instant microbiological water purifier that can provide, at an average, at least 10 liters of purified water an hour and more than 10,000 liters over the product's lifecycle-enough to provide a typical family with 1.5 years worth of clean and safe water. The product has been extensively tested in the United States at the University of Arizona, and complies with US Environmental Protection Agency guidelines for microbiological purifiers, and removes at least 99.9999% of all bacteria, 99.99% of all viruses, and 99.9% of parasites. It also removes dirt from water.

"LifeStraw(R) Family will meet a critically important need in the developing world, where up to five million people die each year from water- related diarrheal disease," added Mr. Vestergaard Frandsen. "The need for safe and clean water is especially acute for people living with HIV and AIDS. Chronic diarrhea is a leading cause of death for people with AIDS, and it affects up to 90% of HIV patients. Further, diarrhea is one of the leading causes of morbidity and mortality among HIV-infected children. Thankfully, products like LifeStraw(R) Family can make a huge difference. In a study among HIV-infected persons in Uganda, for example, the use of safe drinking water decreased diarrhea illness by 36%."

Recent studies have established that household interventions, like LifeStraw(R) Family, are twice as effective in preventing diarrhea as common source-based interventions like new drinking wells, boreholes, and communal tap water stands. In 2006, The Cochrane Collaboration published a systematic review of 38 randomized, controlled trials of various water quality interventions to prevent diarrhea. Of these interventions, filtration provided by far the most diarrhea reduction (63%), compared to other methods like chlorination (37%) and solar disinfection (31%).

LifeStraw(R) Family builds upon the success of LifeStraw(R) Personal, a portable water filtration device developed two years ago by Vestergaard Frandsen and designed to be used outside of the home. Like its predecessor, LifeStraw(R) Family does not require electricity or batteries, making it ideal for use in difficult environments.

LifeStraw(R) Personal has earned many awards and accolades, including 'One of the Ten Things that will Change the Way We Live' by Forbes Magazine; 'Best Invention of 2005' by Time Magazine, and 'Innovation of the Year' by Esquire Magazine.

Company Profile

Founded in Denmark in 1957, Vestergaard Frandsen is an international company specializing in complex emergency response and disease control products. With headquarters in Switzerland, branch offices in Denmark, India, Ghana, Nigeria, Vietnam, Kenya, USA and UAE, and licensed production in India, Vietnam and Thailand, Vestergaard Frandsen's international reach allows the company to quickly respond to complex emergency needs around the globe.

Vestergaard Frandsen strongly believes that business is for profit, but that profit must be for a purpose. The company's unique business model, Humanitarian Entrepreneurship, has allowed these two ideas to coexist, turning humanitarian responsibility into its core business, and making Vestergaard Frandsen a leader in its field.
For more information please visit


Peter Cleary, Public Relations and Communications Director

Office (212) 984-1026, Cell (347) 653-5857,


SOURCE Vestergaard Frandsen
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