The information below has been supplied by dairy marketers and other industry organizations. It has not been edited, verified or endorsed by Hoard’s Dairyman.Merck Animal Health, known as MSD Animal Health outside of the United States and Canada, a division of Merck & Co., Inc., Rahway, N.J., USA (NYSE:MRK), announced today the opening of a manufacturing facility for Merck Animal Health’s animal intelligence products in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. The facility will broaden the company’s manufacturing capacity and capabilities by establishing a printing, production and distribution facility of Allflex Livestock Intelligence identification ear tags in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
This site, which formerly was an animal health manufacturing site for the production of veterinary medicines, will become another supply site for ear-tag production, along with the current site in Dallas, Texas, to support increased product demand. The Baton Rouge site is now operational for ear-tag production as of September 2022. At full capacity, the facility will employ 33 employees.
“Merck Animal Health continues to be a strong source of innovation and growth in Louisiana,” said Mike Strain, DVM, Louisiana Agriculture and Forestry Commissioner. “The upgrades to the Baton Rouge manufacturing facility will lead to more advancements in Animal Health Intelligence products and reinforce the importance of supporting biotechnology companies in the state.”
“We are pleased about the opportunity to bring capital improvements, expansion in our manufacturing capacity and capabilities, new equipment and enhanced technology to our Baton Rouge facility, thereby increasing our ability to fulfill customer demand for our portfolio of Animal Health Intelligence products,” said Glenda Fefee, site director, Merck Animal Health in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. “As a leader in delivering innovative veterinary medicines and vaccines to advance animal health and meet growing customer needs, this investment in people, technology and equipment reflects our commitment to produce a range of ear tags for animal identification, which benefits animal health and well-being.”
Increased Need for Ear-Tag Production
The North America livestock identification market has grown rapidly over the past years, focusing on farming automation and traceability of animals, and causing an ongoing need to identify animals visually by colored and/or custom printed ear tags. This growth in the market has caused an increased demand for ear tags. In addition, the identification ear-tag market is seeing the adoption of radio frequency identification (RFID) for animal disease traceability (ADT) and value-added producer programs, which results in increased customer needs for custom identification ear tags and the importance of increasing manufacturing capacity needs.
Merck Animal Health offers an innovative portfolio to prevent, treat and control diseases across all major Companion Animal and Livestock segments, including connected technology that encompasses identification, traceability and monitoring products. “We are seeing a strong increase in demand for our Animal Health Intelligence products that allow farmers and producers to track and monitor the health of their animals,” said Scott Bormann, senior vice president, North America Commercial Operations, Merck Animal Health. “Our investment in Baton Rouge positions us for strong long-term growth and enables us to remain a valued partner to our loyal customers through reliability and responsiveness to their needs.”
Creating enhanced methods and processes to better serve customers are one part of the company’s multi-faceted approach. “We continue to explore ways to enhance existing facilities with upgraded equipment or technology, further expand our facilities with advanced technology platforms, and increase capacity and capabilities in our facilities to meet the rapidly growing demand for our Animal Health Intelligence products,” said Regina Holzbauer, lead, Merck Animal Health Intelligence Manufacturing. “In this way, the company is better prepared to ensure it provides uninterrupted and compliant supply of ear tags based on increased product demand.”
In the U.S., Merck Animal Health has production facilities in Elkhorn, Nebraska; Millsboro, Delaware; DeSoto, Kansas; Ames, Iowa; Worthington, Minnesota; and Dallas, Texas. The company also has a logistical and distribution center in Omaha, Nebraska.