GSK opens new EUR 8 million biomass energy plant at Dungarvan site
GSK has announced the official opening of a new EUR 8 million biomass energy plant at its healthcare manufacturing facility in Dungarvan, Ireland. The new facility brings the total GSK investment in Dungarvan over past 24 months to EUR 23.2 million.
GlaxoSmithKline plc (GSK), a global pharmaceutical and healthcare major, has announced the opening of an EUR 8 million biomass energy plant investment at its manufacturing site in Dungarvan, Ireland. The new energy facility was officially opened June 23, by Site Director Brian Fox.
According to a statement, the investment has been utilised to develop a new purpose-built biomass energy facility which is expected to reduce the site’s fossil carbon emissions by up to 33 percent. The new biomass plant uses locally sourced woodchips to create a carbon neutral fuel source for the site and is only second of its kind in Ireland.
The development of the biomass energy facility in Dungarvan is part of GSK’s global sustainability strategy which supports the company’s carbon neutral policy. This policy has set “challenging” carbon, water and waste reduction targets for all GSK manufacturing sites across the world.
Dungarvan has responded with significant reductions in energy usage across its plant, delivered by highly efficient, world-class engineering and energy management systems. The biomass energy facility also utilises a sustainable fuel supply as the woodchip it burns is made from waste wood by-product and the ash produced is used in fertiliser, to grow more trees.
This investment from GSK is a significant vote of confidence in the Dungarvan facility, as well as in the capabilities of the town and people of Dungarvan to support such strategic developments. GSK is in Dungarvan 35 years this year and this investment will underpin our existing investments here and our sizeable workforce. It will also significantly enhance Dungarvan’s role in GSK’s global business and today’s investment is a strong recognition of the strong technical and scientific capability we have here, said Brian Fox, Site Director at GSK Dungarvan.
GSK, who this year celebrate 35 years in Dungarvan, employs over 700 employees at two sites in the area:
- The ‘oral care’ facility produces a range of products including ‘Poligrip’ – the denture care range formulated to improve the comfort and oral health of people who wear dentures or partials. The facility produces 40 percent of the world’s supply of denture care products under the Poligrip and Polident brands.
- The ‘over-the-counter’ medical site produces a variety of medicinal products such as Panadol. Approximately 6.5 billion Panadol tablets are produced in Dungarvan annually and exported to 70 countries worldwide.
The biomass plant is the latest in a series of investments made by GSK in the Dungarvan facility:
- EUR 8 million was invested in the implementation of a new environmentally friendly packaging line that utilises a 100 percent recyclable polypropylene. This offers a better solution for the production of ‘blister’ packaged products as it allows the entire blister pack to be manufactured from one recyclable material.
- GSK also invested in an EUR 7.2 million extension to the denture care facility in 2017 to expand tablet compression and packaging capacity.