New factory for Fujifilm in Tilburg

Photo film factory converted into high-tech sustainable production facility to make cell culture media products for the biopharmaceutical industry.

On the 8th of December a new factory in Tilburg was officially opened. The former photo film factory, first opened in 1988 and closed in 2006, has been completely converted and Fujifilm will produce cell culture media for the biopharmaceutical industry in this building, it’s first such facility in Europe. These cell culture media products are powders and liquids that form a nutrient medium in which cells can be grown for the biopharmaceutical industry to produce medicines and vaccines, from cancer and rare diseases to COVID-19.

Expanding in Life Science
The transformation of the photographic film factory in Tilburg into a manufacturing facility for Life Sciences is a symbol of our transition from our core business of photographic film to healthcare. Fujifilm will expand its Life Sciences business by providing high-quality and high-function cell culture media and global production capabilities, while promoting the pharmaceutical industry and the industrialization of cell therapies.

Teiichi Goto, president and CEO of FUJIFILM Corporation

The combination of a good infrastructure and expertise in high-quality technological processes made the site in Tilburg a good location for this new factory. Albert van Maren, President FUJIFILM Manufacturing Europe B.V., explains: “It is our ambition for the Tilburg site to further expand in the energy, environment and healthcare markets. We are therefore proud of the realization of this new factory, it fits perfectly with our high quality standards and the knowledge and experience we already have in the field of production and R&D.

Local supply in Europe
The new facility will produce cell culture media for FUJIFILM Irvine Scientific, Inc. [FISI], a worldwide leader in the development and manufacturing of cell culture media since 1970 and has currently sites in the United States and Japan. FISI has seen significant sales growth since being first acquired by FUJIFILM Corporation in 2018. This new high-tech and sustainable manufacturing facility will play an important role in meeting customers’ demands in Europe for local supply and to develop and produce the types of vaccines and therapies needed by society today, and the cell-based therapies of tomorrow.

CO2 neutral
During the realization of the new factory, it was investigated how the new facility could become CO2 neutral. The electricity of the production process in Tilburg is already 100% generated by wind energy. Next to this electrical driven heat pumps are installed for optimization of the cooling and heating process. Further sustainability of the new factory, through the installation of an e-boiler, is planned for 2022. This will make the energy usage of the new factory 100% CO2 neutral.