The expansion planned for two manufacturing faciliities in the US adds to a global push to increase production for Merck

Merck has several manufacturing plants across the US (Credit: Shutterstock/Kristi Blokhin)

Merck is broadening its US manufacturing footprint with a combined €40m ($48.5m) investment in its production facilities in Massachusetts and New Hampshire. 

The life science and technology giant cited the Covid-19 pandemic and worldwide efforts to create a vaccine for it as reasons for the increased demand.

The expansions are expected to significantly increase capacity and output at both facilities by the end of 2021 and 2022, respectively, and create nearly 700 jobs.

Merck interim head of Life Science Chris Ross said: “The global coronavirus pandemic has significantly increased demand for our single-use and virus filtration technologies, which we are supplying to more than 50 different companies working on Covid-19 vaccine candidates.

“These investments will strengthen our global manufacturing footprint, allowing us to meet this unprecedented demand and help get lifesaving vaccines and therapies to more patients, faster.”


Massachusetts and New Hampshire Merck US manufacturing expansions

The planned expansion will add 6,000 square meters of space to the single-use assembly operation at Merck’s site in Danvers, Massachusetts – adding to the existing 11,000-square-meter facility.

It will add the capacity needed to support the manufacturing of products across several portfolios, including Merck’s Mobius single-use consumables.

The total investment in Danvers is about €21m ($25.5m) and will add approximately 400 jobs throughout 2021.

The expansion in Jaffrey, New Hampshire, will add 2,300 square meters to the existing 24,000-square-meter facility.

The additional capacity includes new production lines and equipment to support the manufacturing of filtration devices and membrane products – specifically Durapore filters, Express filters and the Viresolve product lines.

These products are used to ensure the sterility of many lifesaving therapies and to remove viral contamination for a variety of therapies.

The total investment in Jaffrey is about €18.5m ($22.5m), with the expansion expected to bring nearly 275 roles by 2022.

These expansions add to several other life science investments announced in 2020 designed to further enhance manufacturing capabilities and broaden the company’s global manufacturing footprint.

They include facilities in Buchs, Switzerland, Carlsbad, California, Madison, Wisconsin and Darmstadt, Germany.