8 May 2013

New processing plant for US firm

12:50 pm on 8 May 2013

A United States pharmaceutical company is setting up a $24 million cattle blood processing plant in Manawatu.

Proliant produces bovine serum albumin (BSA) from cattle blood and has announced its plans to build a plant in Feilding.

BSA is used in an array of products such as vaccines, biopharmaceuticals, diagnostic kit manufacturing and also in stem cell research.

Chief executive Steve Welch said Proliant is supplied with cattle plasma by Silver Fern Farms.

Chief operating officer Randal Fitzgerald said New Zealand's Free Trade Agreement with China, which will give it preferential market access, was an influencing factor in setting up shop here.

He said the company chose Manawatu in part because Massey University is there.

If everything goes according to plan, Mr Fitzgerald expects the plant will be operational in 2016.