Biotechnology company Sartorius inaugurated its first culture media plant for cells in Puerto Rico with an investment of $33 million. The 21,500-square-foot facility is the first of its kind established by the Germany-based company. The plant was designed, built, and validated by Puerto Rican hands.
Culture media for cells are essential in the production of biotechnology industry products as they serve as the food for cells, proteins, and viruses to grow and develop into medicines. The state-of-the-art plant features high-quality equipment and adheres to industry standards. It has created 30 direct jobs, with plans to expand to multiple shifts.
The expansion of the Yauco plant is significant as its products have been used by 80% of the companies involved in manufacturing COVID-19 vaccines. The Department of Economic Development and Commerce (DDEC) has expressed optimism that Sartorius’ investment will attract similar businesses to Puerto Rico.
Despite the expansion, the DDEC did not provide any additional incentives as the company already had existing incentives for its manufacturing activity. The project took three years to complete and has elevated the local operation to the level of the parent corporation.
The expansion of Sartorius’ plant brings certainty to Puerto Rico following recent announcements of plant closures by other companies. The Yauco plant has been operational since 1983 and currently employs over 1,200 individuals. Sartorius has approximately 16,000 employees and 60 manufacturing plants worldwide.