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Pfizer Breaks Ground on One of the World’s Most Technically Advanced Sterile Injectable Pharmaceutical Production Facilities

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Heather Baker
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Pfizer Inc. broke ground, today, March 31, on one of the world’s most technically advanced sterile injectable pharmaceutical production facilities–known as Modular Aseptic Processing (MAP)–in Kalamazoo, Michigan.

MAP is a multi-story, 420,000-square-foot production engine that is expected to add approximately 450 new jobs in Kalamazoo County. Several Michigan elected officials were in attendance.

Pfizer’s new Modular Aseptic Processing facility in Portage is a multi-story, 420,000-square-foot that will house 450 employees when it is fully operational. Photo compliments of Pfizer.

Pfizer announced its plans for the facility in July 2018, following Michigan Strategic Fund approval of support including the Good Jobs for Michigan program that helped to secure competitive projects to grow the  economy long-term and have a transformational impact on Michigan communities and its workforce. The new jobs that were part of the $465 million investment by the company include professional and skilled labor positions, with average annual income ranges from $70,100 to $93,300. To date, Good Jobs for Michigan has helped secure $6.6 billion in private investment and 11,300 committed, high-wage jobs through six projects including today’s Pfizer groundbreaking.

“Pfizer’s investment in Michigan for this cutting-edge production facilities highlights Michigan’s leadership in life sciences and medical device manufacturing as well as the state’s commitment to growing high-wage tech jobs to strengthen economic opportunity for Michiganders,” said Michigan Economic Development Corporation Chief Business Development Officer and Executive Vice President Josh Hundt. “This project will continue to anchor Pfizer in the Kalamazoo area for years to come and further establish the life science sector in Southwest Michigan.”

Chaz Calitri, vice president operations at Pfizer, who leads three of Pfizer’s injectable sites around the world voiced his praise for the project and site, particularly calling out its ability to develop the COVID-19 so quickly. “Although I’m not from Michigan, I feel like an honorary citizen. I spent most of 2020 here and helped scale up development of the vaccine under Pat McEvoy. With less than 10 months from March 20 to December 13 when the first trucks rolled out, it is an incredible achievement. There’s a can-do spirit here,” said Calitri. “Our team in Michigan demonstrated why we don’t hesitate to invest at this site. With the university system here, we have a tremendous labor pool. Of our most recent hires, 600 are college graduates.”

In celebration of the event, Pfizer officials were joined by Portage Mayor Patricia Randall, U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow, U.S. Representative Fred Upton, and others.

U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow recounted her morning which started up in Grand Rapids at a vaccine clinic and the future potential impact of the project to do more in the global fight to stem the pandemic. “When I think of 450 high paying jobs, that is exciting. [Pfizer] will keep Michigan a leader in life-saving technologies. It is about hope. It is about science. It is about technology,” said U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow.

Joining in on her praise for the local team was U.S. Representative Fred Upton. Upton added, “Its promising to come together to solve a problem here in Portage, Michigan that has perplexed the world. Thank you, Pfizer.”

Pfizer’s Kalamazoo facility is a primary global supplier of sterile injectable medicines, as well as active pharmaceutical ingredients, liquids and semi-solids, powders, and medical devices. Pfizer produces more than 150 products at the site, serving over 120 countries. Among the products made here are Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine, Vfend, Dynastat, Solu Medrol, Elelyso, Eraxis, Solu Cortef, Thrombin, Depo Medrol, Depo Provera, Depo Testosterone, Atgam, Bevacizumab, aCoral Snake Antivenin, Cleocin, Zyvox, Ibrance, Eucrisa, Synarel, and Zithromax. The Kalamazoo facility currently employs about 2,800 full-time employees and contractors.

Pfizer’s legacy of making medicines in Michigan goes back more than 150 years, with 135 years in Kalamazoo County. “We’re proud of that history and eager to work with the state and community to write the next chapter,” the company announced in a press release prior to the event.

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