Corning, Merck, Pfizer tie up to make ‘Valor Glass’ in US

22 Jul 2017


US President Donald Trump – emphasising 'Make in America', like Prime Minister Narendra Modi's 'Make in India' - announced on Thursday that three pharmaceutical companies have teamed up to bring pharmaceutical glass packing manufacturing to the US in a decision that he said will create thousands of manufacturing jobs and an investment of at least $4 billion.

As part of the White House's Made in America week, the president said that Merck, Pfizer, and Corning are creating an advanced pharmaceutical glass packing operations, a technology that will be used to store and deliver injectable drugs, vials, and cartridges. And Trump sought to take the credit for this.

The new glass has been dubbed 'Corning Valor Glass'.

"These three companies are announcing that pharmaceutical glass packaging will now be made in America. That's a big step. That's a big statement. We're very proud of that. Thank you very much, by the way, and I know they wouldn't have done it under another administration. I feel confident," Trump said.

"These companies have formed a ground-breaking partnership to create thousands of American manufacturing jobs with this innovative new product. It's an incredible product. Merck, Pfizer, and Corning are coming together to create an advanced pharmaceutical glass packaging operations, which include an immediate investment of at least $500 million and the creation of nearly 1,000 new jobs - and quickly," he said.

"The initial investment will be spread across facilities in New York, New Jersey, and a new manufacturing plant in southeast of the United States - they're looking right now - which Corning will be announcing in the coming months, and there's some pretty good competition. I know they're going to make a great deal," Trump said.

"Eventually, the companies here today expect a total investment in this initiative to reach at least $4 billion and create some 4,000 American jobs, and it's very innovative on top of it," he added.

Pharmaceutical glass manufacturing is an industry where the US lags behind some other countries.

"We're moving more and more companies back into the United States, and they're doing more and more of these products.  And that would have been unheard of even a couple of years ago," the president said.

"These companies have achieved a breakthrough in pharmaceutical glass technology that will be used to store and deliver injectable drugs and vials and cartridges. This technology is not only great for American jobs and manufacturing, it's great for patients who now will have access to safer medicines and vaccines," Trump said.

"It's also great for the health care workers who can administer the drugs - makes it much, much safer for them without having any problems and worrying about vial-breaking, which, as I understand, is a tremendous problem that we're not going to have anymore," he said.

The companies made the announcement on their websites on Thursday.

Corning's website states that all three companies are continuing "their commitment to American innovation with the announcement of Corning Valor Glass, a breakthrough in pharmaceutical packaging".

In a press release on Merck's website, the company said the White House Office of American Innovation "has encouraged this initiative as a model of cross-industry technology collaboration and economic investment".

"As a result of Merck and Pfizer's commitment to improving glass quality and promising results from their initial testing, Corning is making an initial investment of $500 million and creating 1,000 new US jobs as the first part of a planned investment of $4 billion and 4,000 new high-tech jobs," Merck stated on its website.

"Deep pharmaceutical formulation and manufacturing process insights from Merck and Pfizer, in combination with Corning's glass science and precision forming capabilities helped deliver an exceptional glass packaging solution for injectable drugs in vials and cartridges. The companies' continued collaborations will focus on additional evaluations and the deployment of this new innovation," Merck announced.

"Corning Valor Glass packaging offers superior chemical durability, strength and damage resistance. These qualities enable increased throughput and more reliable access to state-of-the-art medicines for patients, while maintaining a high level of quality assurance for pharmaceutical companies," it added.

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