WILMINGTON, Del.—With an aging population, a rise in chronic diseases and ever-increasing health care costs, medical device and biopharma businesses require innovation, collaboration and forward thinking from their suppliers.
Couple these trends with a crushing pressure for COVID-19 vaccine development and delivery, and it is no surprise that DuPont is investing heavily in both capital and capacity at its Hemlock, Mich., manufacturing plant for its Liveo brand of silicone medical products.
"Devices are becoming smaller, easier to use, with more digital functionality," said Diana Salvadori, Americas marketing leader with Liveo Healthcare. "Silicones play an important role in providing high purity, biocompatible, inherently flexible material solutions. Over the last decade, biologics have experienced significant growth—and with COVID-19 there has been increased pressure on vaccine development and demand. We have a proven track record working with our customers to successfully develop innovative solutions to help patients live healthier and more convenient lives."
Plans for the investment in Liveo Healthcare were released late in 2020, but DuPont has not disclosed how much it intends to spend.
Upgrades at the facility include extrusion capacity expansion for tubing, a new ISO 7 clean room and ongoing elastomer capacity expansions with new mixing equipment for liquid silicone rubber and high-consistency rubber.
"These significant investments in both capital and resources strengthen the strategic capabilities of our Liveo Healthcare silicones," Salvadori said. "To support customer growth and accelerate new product introductions, these targeted investments include increasing supply capacities with manufacturing improvements."