Media Release

2 September 2009

Roche and Canton Zug introduce reed protection project in Buonas

Protecting the reed beds on the Buonas peninsula of Lake Zug

Roche and Canton Zug are today presenting information about a joint project to protect the reedbeds at the north end of the Buonas peninsula. Reeds are native to this wetland area and are a very valuable component of its ecosystem. Further areas have now been planted with reeds to help expand these beds. Media and guests are invited to take a tour of the peninsula.

"Roche has set itself the target of honouring and preserving Buonas' cultural and scenic heritage. We are delighted to be supporting the Canton Zug "Schilfschutz" ("reed protection") working group and to be further enriching the peninsula's flora by planting these reed beds," said Gottlieb Keller, General Counsel and Head of Corporate Services at Roche.

Heinz Tännler, head of the department of public works and the environment for Canton Zug, hopes this scheme will inspire others like it: "The shore landscape of Lake Zug is very important to us. It therefore gives us great pleasure to see Roche's commitment to the endangered reed beds through this small but high-quality joint project with the Canton. Perhaps this example will encourage other private landowners around the lake to bring their sections of the shore closer to nature."

Measures to protect reed beds benefit vast numbers of species: reeds are an important habitat for animals and plants, offering them almost endless supplies of oxygen, water, light and nutrients. It is thus hardly surprising that such a wide range of species are present in this transition zone between water and land. The reed beds provide protection and seclusion, breeding and spawning grounds and a good nutritional basis. What is more, reeds are an important bioindicator: where these plants thrive, nature is intact.

With its acquisition in 1997 of the Buonas peninsula – one of the gems of Central Switzerland – Roche was able to fulfil a long-held desire to create its own training and conference centre while simultaneously preserving it for future generations. A far-reaching park maintenance programme has been set up to highlight the special atmosphere and appeal of this landscape park and ensure that it is preserved for posterity.

About the Canton Zug's "Schilfschutz" working group

The cantonal working group aims to protect reed beds by coordinating and implementing the various activities needed to preserve these beds and the lakeshores in general. These efforts are steered by a reed protection concept featuring measures designed to protect and nurture the reed beds in Lake Zug and Lake Aegeri.

The working group has been active since 1997. It is an interdisciplinary body made up of representatives from the cantonal departments of fisheries and hunting, environmental protection, civil engineering and land use planning.

The group has proved its worth: its projects to protect reeds and the shoreline are properly coordinated and implemented efficiently, while raising the profile of this work both among interested parties and the general public. This is important, as reed protection can only work with the participation of everyone who uses the lake and its shores.

Roche in Switzerland

With R&D expenditure of almost 1.9 billion Swiss francs and investments of more than 42 million Swiss francs (2007), Roche in Switzerland plays a key role in the Group’s global research, development and production network. At Group headquarters in Basel and at other sites in Northwestern and Central Switzerland and in the cantons of Berne and Zurich, Roche employs a total of some 9,500 people. As a leader in the pharmaceuticals and in-vitro diagnostics sectors, Roche posted sales of 509 million Swiss francs in Switzerland in 2008. More about Roche in Switzerland: www.roche.ch

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