BASF in the United Kingdom

BASF Pharma (Callanish) Limited

BASF Callanish lab.jpg

BASF Pharma (Callanish) Limited is a global leader in manufacturing highly-concentrated omega-3 fatty acids, for pharmaceutical, clinical nutrition and general nutritional applications.

We provide all the key fatty acids of Omega-3 up to 99% purity, including EPA, DHA and GLA to name a few. Our cGMP facility on the Isle of Lewis, off the North West coast of Scotland, has been operating for more than 20 years as a dedicated lipid development plant, and can deliver commercial quantities of whatever form a customer requires: free fatty acids, ethyl esters, enriched, or reconstituted triglycerides.

Our flexible purification methods can be applied to fatty acids from all main sources: marine, botanical and algal. Researchers and pharmaceutical companies use our super-pure lipids to develop active pharmaceutical ingredients.


The Callanish site
BASF acquired Equateq Ltd. and its site in Callanish in 2012. BASF Pharma (Callanish) Limited, which employs about 80 people, is part of the Pharma Ingredients & Services unit of BASF’s Nutrition & Health division.

Research & Development
Our R&D is focused on facilitating the uses of high purity lipids in the areas of cardiology, neurology and oncology, as well as advanced lipid synthesis to build novel lipid compounds that offer great potential for breakthrough medical treatments in the areas of diabetic neuropathy and inflammation.

Omega 3
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We have three main product lines:
Our industry-leading Maxomega® range of fatty acids of up to 99% purity for use as active pharmaceutical ingredients.

Our Crystalpure™ range of natural omega oil concentrates for the clinical nutirition, food and nutraceutical sectors. These are pure, potent and natural oils delivering 50%+ polyunsaturated fatty acids.

Bespoke Oils and Lipid Compounds to meet customer requirements and specifications.   

Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients and Raw Materials

Video on YouTube Omega 3 at BASF (2022)

Core processes
We are experts in low temperature fractionation, an elegant process by which saturated and monounsaturated triglycerides are filtered off, leaving a fraction of polyunsaturated omega-3 triglyceride of at least 50% Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids (PUFA).

We use our patented industrial-scale High Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC) to deliver commercial quantities of most of the key fatty acids on the omega-3 and omega-6 cascades at up to 99% purity.


New warehouse
A new warehouse to help service high market demand for the Omega-3 fatty acids produced at Callanish was opened in June 2017 by Angus MacNeil, MP for h-Eileanan an Iar. Highlands and Islands Enterprise, which owns the Callanish site, invested £2.8m in the project.

Video on YouTube (2017)

Iain Macarthur pictured with his Gaelic translation of ‘My Mum & Dad work at BASF’.
Translator Iain Macarthur pictured with the Gaelic version of ‘My Mum & Dad work at BASF’.

Life Science Awards
In 2017 BASF Pharma (Callanish) Limited won a Scottish Enterprise Life Science Award in the export and international trade category.

The Awards recognise the success and achievements of Scotland’s internationally renowned life sciences sector in areas including innovation, export and international trade, investment, community engagement and collaboration.  

In 2015 we received the Scottish Enterprise Life Sciences Award for Community Engagement. The long list of achievements submitted to the judging panel ranged from ongoing engagement with school age children and leavers within the life and chemical sciences sector to working with the Western Isles Regional Fire Fighters to provide voluntary fire support in the remote region of the Isle of Lewis.

We developed a Gaelic version of the BASF children’s book ‘My Mum & Dad work at BASF’, which we have given to schools in the Western Isles, formulated a ‘Chemistry @ Work’ primary school initiative, provided local secondary schools with the chance to engage with practising chemists and employed four local Lewis residents as higher education students over the summer period.  

BASF Pharma (Callanish) Limited
Breasclete, Callanish, Isle of Lewis HS2 9ED

Registered Office
2 Stockport Exchange, Railway Road, Stockport, SK1 3GG
Registered in England