Fujifilm invests $188m in new North Carolina cell culture media facility
Land development and construction are scheduled to start in spring 2023 with the facility scheduled to go live in 2025.
The new site will be operated by Fujifilm Irvine Scientific, the fifth media manufacturing plant to be operated by the subsidiary. It also operates cell culture media manufacturing facilities in California, US, the Netherlands, and the Saitama and Aichi prefectures in Japan.
The raw materials manufactured at the facility will help ensure a steady supply of raw materials for biologics, cell and gene therapies, and other key medicines.
The forecasted hike in demand for cell culture media to support bioproduction and advanced therapies is projected to hit a CAGR of around 15.80% between 2022 and 2028.
The move will triple the company’s current capacity for liquid cell culture media production; it will also create over 100 new positions, including bioprocessing engineers, manufacturing, production, and logistics roles.
The RTP plant will be over 250,000 sq. feet (23225.76 sq. m) and will be spread across 64 acres.
"The facility will greatly expand FUJIFILM Irvine’s production capacity for dry powder, liquid media, process liquids, and water for injection (WFI)," said a spokesperson.
The site will add additional production capacity of 800,000 kg/year for dry powder, 3,300,000 l/year for liquid, and 40,000 l/day of WFI.
"Opening a new facility in North Carolina allows the company to progress its strategic objective of expanding its capacity by constructing manufacturing facilities in biotech across the world. The new facility will both support East Coast Life Science Companies by providing a faster, more streamlined delivery service, and also customers globally due to its capacity for large-scale, bulk order manufacturing," the representative added.
The Research Triangle Foundation, the Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina, and that state’s Department of Commerce, among others, collaborated with the company on the initiative.
In terms of the new factory's sustainability goals, the spokesperson told us: "Fujifilm Group emphasizes environmental conservation and maintaining the trust of stakeholders. Design of the building is in progress, however we will fulfill our economic and legal responsibilities and try to understand local environmental and social issues to positively impact the community."