Contract-manufacturing companies working to accelerate the global availability of COVID-19 vaccines are struggling with a shortage of workers to meet this year's big production push, as reported in Morningstar.
The talent pool is so tight that Emergent BioSolutions, a COVID-19 contractor for AstraZeneca and Johnson & Johnson, enlisted its CEO and a half-dozen other senior executives to pitch potential hires at a recent virtual career fair.
Outsourcing companies such as Emergent produce about one-sixth of complex treatments including vaccines, but the scale and abruptness of COVID-19 shots is likely to drive up that share much higher, industry executives and experts say.
The news source noted that with demand dwarfing supply, Pfizer, Moderna and others are turning to contract manufacturers for assistance in what is the largest pharmaceutical rollout in modern history.
Lonza is recruiting dozens of new employees from quality-assurance managers to engineers at one of its facilities in Switzerland, which is expected to turn out 300 million doses over the next year.
Meanwhile, Recipharm, which is helping with late-stage production, is hiring about 65 workers for a plant in France. Avid Bioservices, which has contracts to make components for multiple vaccine candidates, expects to recruit about 40 new employees by next summer, double a typical year.
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