Japanese High Tech Firm FUJIFILM Opens New Factory in the Netherlands

Former photo film factory in Tilburg becomes sustainable biopharmaceutical production site

Fujifilm biopharma site in the Netherlands

The Japanese high tech company FUJIFILM has officially opened its new biopharma factory in Tilburg, the Netherlands. The former photo film factory, first opened in 1988 and closed in 2006, has been completely converted by FUJIFILM to produce cell culture media for the biopharmaceutical industry. It is FUJIFILM’s first such facility in Europe.

FUJIFILM reports that the new high tech and sustainable manufacturing facility in the Netherlands will play an important role in meeting customers’ demands in Europe for local supply of materials needed to develop and produce the types of vaccines and therapies needed by society today, and the cell-based therapies of tomorrow. The cell culture media products that are produced in the new factory are powders and liquids that form a nutrient medium in which cells can be grown for the biopharmaceutical industry to make medicines and vaccines, from cancer and rare diseases to COVID-19.

Transition to Life Sciences & Health

Teiichi Goto, president and CEO of FUJIFILM Corporation, said: ‘The transformation of the photographic film factory in Tilburg into a manufacturing facility for Life Sciences is a symbol of our transition from our core business of photographic film to healthcare. FUJIFILM will expand its Life Sciences business by providing high-quality and high-function cell culture media and global production capabilities, while promoting the pharmaceutical industry and the industrialization of cell therapies.’

Dutch infrastructure and tech talent

FUJIFILM explains that the combination of a good infrastructure and expertise in high-quality technological processes made the site in Tilburg a good location for the new factory. Albert van Maren, President FUJIFILM Manufacturing Europe B.V., explains: ‘It is our ambition for the Tilburg site to further expand in the energy, environment and healthcare markets. We are therefore proud of the realization of this new factory, it fits perfectly with our high quality standards and the knowledge and experience we already have in the field of production and R&D.’

Sustainable CO2 neutral factory

During the realization of the new factory, FUJIFILM investigated how the new facility could become CO2 neutral. The electricity of the production process in Tilburg is already 100% generated by wind energy. Next to this, electrical driven heat pumps have been installed for optimization of the cooling and heating process. Further sustainability of the new factory, through the installation of an e-boiler, is planned for 2022. This will make the energy usage of the new factory 100% CO2 neutral.

Fujifilm in the Netherlands

FUJIFILM announced its plans to build the new biopharma factory in the Netherlands in 2019. By locating in the Netherlands, the company becomes part of the highly-connected and diversified Dutch Life Sciences and Health community. FUJIFILM was assisted in its location selection by the Netherlands Foreign Investment Agency and the Brabant Development Agency, both partners in the Invest in Holland network.

Sources: FUJIFILM press release and Brabant Development Agency

See video by FUJIFILM:

9 December 2021

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