Pictured from left:
Waipa Mayor Jim Mylchreest, Operations Manager Chris Bowman, local iwi representative Charlie Maihuku and CEO Kerry Paul
Construction of a new $10 million facility for Waikato-based, leading biotechnology company Manuka Health, kicks off on Friday (10 January) when the first sods are turned at the Te Awamutu site.
“We’ve kept processing efficiencies and quality a priority throughout the planning stages, utilising the latest available technologies,” says the company’s Operations Manager Chris Bowman.
“The plant will be GMP (Good Manufacturing Practice) compliant and able to cater for future growth and expansion in excess of a turnover of $100 million a year.”
The plant, which is the culmination of two years’ planning by the company, will combine internationally accredited laboratories, honey-drum storage, blending, packing and distribution under one roof for the first time.
Operations Manager Chris Bowman says Manuka Health recently confirmed Hawkin’s Construction as the project construction company following a competitive tender process.
“It’s very exciting to have the green light for the project,” says Chris. “The team here is doing a great job meeting ever increasing global demand for our products with limited space. We can’t wait to move into our new premises.”
The company is confident the exterior of the structural steel and tilt slab concrete building will be completed by the end of September with the internal fit-out ready to move in by the end of the following month.
Manuka Health was established in 2006 by Kerry Paul, who was born in Te Awamutu and grew up in the town.
“Building the new plant in Te Awamutu is re-establishing historic family links with the district,” he says. “I am very excited that Manuka Health is continuing to make an economic and social contribution to the area in the family tradition.”
His great- grandfather, a Scotsman, moved from the goldfields of Ballarat to Te Awamutu with his wife and family in 1896. Three generations of the Paul family have lived in the area since, including Kerry’s father who was one of 17 children.
Since its establishment, Manuka Health has grown to be a leader in commercialisation of biotechnologies for human health care applications, exporting more than 80 functional foods and dietary supplements to over 45 countries. It has achieved annual growth of 50 percent a year over the last six years with sales of $30 million this financial year.