Buying reagents as a private person

I am in a transition phase of my life. I stopped working at the hospital to start an educational startup. At the moment I haven’t funded it yet as I had other issues.
I wanted to order some reagents from ThermoFisher (e.g. just a trivial gel loading dyes) and I could not continue as at some point it was asking me for a VAT.
I tried other suppliers and I discovered that they also want you to be a company or an university.

I imagine that this can be easily solved by “setting up a company”, but it raised in me a lot of concerns as I wanted to teach people to use stuff, they won’t be able to buy easily. How do you buy reagent as private person? I am talking of simple chemicals not pathogenic things, which supplier do you use?

I have also noticed deal like this on ebay:

but there must be a better solution, without ordering things from US which will cost just 80 USD to ship

Dear Alessandro

Wow this sounds much interesting and like a very promising path to take, congratulations. As for the educational startup, I could might help you out with an official VAT number and get things started more easly? As well again with BSL1 Ecogen Portal, which is a still ongoing project.

Pls feel free to get in contact with me. Since we seem to share common ideas. Hackteria is moving to a bigger space and finally will settle down for at least 5 years at the ZWZ (Josefstrasse) early summer this 2020

Summer 2020

ZWZ - Zentalwäscherei 300m2



Digitale Gesellschaft Schweiz

as well as other partners.

all best, M

Maya Minder

Are you in Zurich or Luzern?

So, there is no way in the meantime that I have “everything in Orden” to buy reagent?

I have used to buy microscope accessories for personal use. I had a quick look at their web site and they may have what you are looking for.

thanks, actually they do have the loading dye!!! Unfortunately not so many other things, so the problem in the future remains

we have discussed and epxlored this deepy over the years.
yes, it can be very frustrating sometimes. especially @gaudi had many experiences.

he documented a lot here:

please add at will!

in the end the odin is a very reliable source.
also ebay, has more than you think, just ordered all kinda chemicals from here and here
or ask friends from uni to give stuff to you.


we are already in the loop and preparing some ideas for that PWA seed grant, starting notes here

get some decent support to build up skills, people and some shared material is the goal.


Hi. Carl Roth was the most customer friendly company for me so far: