Boehringer Ingelheim to expand Puerto Rico plant

The company is expanding its capacity to make products that help protect pets from health problems.

Boehringer Ingelheim, a leading global provider of animal health products for pets and livestock, and Secretary Manuel A. Laboy Rivera of the Puerto Rico Department of Economic Development and Commerce announced today a nearly $50 million expansion of Boehringer Ingelheim’s manufacturing site in Barceloneta, Puerto Rico.

The investment will create up to 105 full-time jobs in three to five years, bringing full-time employment at the site as high as 322.

Laboy Rivera thanked Boehringer Ingelheim for reaffirming its commitment to Puerto Rico and said expansion plans like Boehringer Ingelheim’s demonstrate that Puerto Rico is on track to continue attracting business and industry. The secretary noted that the pharmaceutical industry in Puerto Rico accounts for 29.9 percent of gross domestic product.

Everett Hoekstra, president of Boehringer Ingelheim Animal Health USA Inc., said the company is proud of its ties to the island.

“Our site in Puerto Rico is critical to meet growing demand for products that help protect pets from disease,” he said.

Headquartered in Duluth, Georgia, Boehringer Ingelheim’s Animal Health business in the United States has invested more than $220 million to expand sites in Georgia, Missouri and Puerto Rico in the last few years. Those investments have created or will create several hundred jobs.

“We are dedicated to the communities around the United States where our employees live and work,” Hoekstra said.

The Barceloneta plant has been in operation for 48 years.

Boehringer Ingelheim’s Barceloneta site manufactures Heartgard Plus (ivermectin/pyrantel). HEARTGARD Plus is a real beef chew that prevents heartworm disease in dogs and treats and controls hookworm and roundworm infections.

The $49.9 million expansion will let the site start manufacturing NexGard (afoxolaner), which is FDA-approved for the treatment and prevention of flea infestations, and the treatment and control of tick infestations in dogs; it also is the only product that is FDA-approved for the prevention of Lyme infections as a direct result of killing vector ticks. The Barceloneta site already packages NexGard (afoxolaner) manufactured in Brazil for shipment to the United States and Canada.

In addition to operating a manufacturing site on the island, Boehringer Ingelheim has invested time and resources to help people and animals in Puerto Rico.

The company has contributed products worth $2.2 million as part of the Spayathon for Puerto Rico, a coalition of 26 groups organized by the Humane Society of the United States. Those groups have provided free spay/neuter and vaccination services to tens of thousands of animals.

In addition, the BI Cares Foundation, an independent nonprofit organization that operates out of Boehringer Ingelheim’s U.S. headquarters in Ridgefield, Connecticut, donated more than $150,000 to nonprofits that provided assistance in Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria in 2017. The Foundation donated medicine for people on the island. The company’s animal health business donated products for animals.

This fall, Boehringer Ingelheim plans to donate the first of 60,000 doses of rabies vaccine and tens of thousands of dollars to fight rabies in Puerto Rico.

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