J&J expands Irish footprint with €300m plant and 200 new jobs

J&J subsidiary Janssen has opened a 206,000 square-foot biologics manufacturing facility at its site in Ringaskiddy, county Cork.

Janssen Science Ireland announced its plans to construct a €300 million biomanufacturing plant at its site in Ringaskiddy in 2017 and this week the 19,100 m2 (206,000 square feet) opened its doors.

“Our manufacturing facilities in Cork are at the cutting-edge of delivering healthcare solutions, which is an important part of our credo commitment to provide the highest quality products to patients,” Kathy Wengel, EVP and chief global supply chain officer at Johnson & Johnson, said in a statement.

Image: iStock/NatanaelGinting

“Our Ringaskiddy facility is an important part of our global manufacturing network and expanding our capabilities here will allow us to pursue innovative solutions that advance how medicines are manufactured so that we can be at the forefront of treating, preventing, intercepting and curing some of the world’s most devastating and complex diseases.”

Janssen opened the Ringaskiddy site in 2005 as a hub for the production of biopharmaceuticals for treatments for immune diseases and cancer. The extra 200 jobs created with the new facility pushes the workforce at the site to around 750.

Ireland biomanufacturing

Ireland has long been a hub of manufacturing in the pharma space, spurred by low corporate tax rates, and a highly skilled workforce. And as pipelines shift to large molecules the Emerald Isle continues to see investments in pharma production capabilities, albeit biologics.

Biomanufacturing firms including Eli LillyPfizerRegeneron, Takeda, and WuXi Biologics have all invested heavily over the past couple of years, while suppliers including Meissner, GE Healthcare and ABEC have also set up manufacturing bases in Ireland.

Meanwhile, the biopharma sector has been further encouraged by government support, including the funding and establishment of the National Institute for Bioprocessing Research and Training (NIBRT), which has been described as a ‘flight simulator for biomanufacturing,’ and has trained over 4,000 people a year in bioproduction processes since it opened in 2011 from its site in Dublin.