Commercial FIA promotion

Tecator more or less took over marketing and sales of the Bifok produced FIA equipment. Workshops were arranged in Höganäs, Sweden, and at many other places in Europe. Customers could bring and run samples. At one of these occasions we had customers in Höganäs not only from Sweden but also from Denmark and Norway. I remember that I was teaching the ammonia method based on gas diffusion.  I had previously demonstrated the method with success for whole blood samples at some hospitals in Sweden but also at Children’s Hospital in Philadelphia. So I felt very comfortable with this method. During my lecture I said something like “you can determine ammonium in all kinds of samples” unaware that one person in the audience had brought gastric juice samples from cows and another whole blood samples from Norwegian salmon. Imaging the smell that developed in the room during the practical exercise session! We had to change class room for the next lectures.

The FIA concept was well received in Europe and Japan. The promotion in the US had a slower progress, but after three well-attended workshops at Miami University, Oxford, Ohio and with the professional help from Gil Pacey and his students, the situation improved. We really got some FIA fans in the U.S. and with some a true friendship developed. To my knowledge, Don Olson was the first owner of a Bifok FIA instrument in the U.S. Olson was a research chemist at Shell at the time where he was a pioneer in the application of FIA to process analysis. In 1976 Olson made a trip to Denmark to visit Jarda Ruzicka's lab followed by a trip to Sweden to purchase a Bifok FIA 05 unit.