Steri-Pharma expanding antibiotics plant in New York

Antibiotics maker Steri-Pharma will more than double its workforce after completing an expansion of its Syracuse, New York, plant next year.

An upstate New York maker of antibiotics has scored some government incentives to help cover the cost of expanding its plant in Syracuse, which will allow it to more than double its workforce.

Steri-Pharma has won about $1.8 million in tax breaks for a $50 million expansion of its plant, Syracuse.com reports. It is preparing to add an 18,500-square-foot addition to its 73,882-square-foot facility. Work is slated to begin in the summer and be finished by July 2018.

When complete, the drugmaker has agreed to add 72 jobs to the 48 employees now working at the facility, Steri-Pharma Plant Director Andrew Mather told the publication.  

Built in 1988 to manufacture sterile and non-sterile cephalosporins, Steri-Pharma bought the facility in 2009 from Hanford Pharmaceuticals. The company manufactures parenteral cephalosporin products and non-sterile, intramammary infusion products.

Mather said the expansion will allow the drugmaker to increase production of an antibiotic for drug-resistant infections. He pointed out that many drugmakers have gotten out of the antibiotics business because of the low margins.

With a growing threat from drug-resistant infections, there is significant development work in that area. In fact, Pfizer has launched a new system that it calls ATLAS, with a website and a mobile app for healthcare providers to track antibiotic resistance. Pfizer created the database, now called Antimicrobial Testing Leadership and Surveillance, 13 years ago at the request of regulators in the U.S. and Europe, and it has now morphed into an open online database of antibiotic resistance around the world.