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New U.S. Manufacturing Plants Announced in November 2022

Posted by IndustrySelect on Wednesday, November 30, 2022

 Scorpion Biological Services Opens New Plant

 Above: Scorpion Biological Services Celebrates Grand Opening of its San Antonio Facility

Despite a challenging business climate, U.S. manufacturers continue to break ground on new manufacturing facilities at an accelerated rate. Representing billions in investments and thousands of jobs, November’s new plant announcements encompassed a wide range of industries, from EV technology to biotech to food processing.

Let’s explore some of the most exciting new manufacturing companies announced in November 2022.

New Manufacturing Companies Announced in November 2022

First Solar Announces Major Alabama Project

First up, we saw some big news for the state of Alabama this month, when First Solar, Inc. announced plans to establish a new photovoltaic solar module manufacturing plant in Lawrence County. Representing an investment of $1.1 billion, the new facility will bring 700 new jobs to the area.

This new enterprise is part of First Solar’s pledge to scale its U.S. manufacturing footprint to over 10 gigawatts by the year 2025. The new Georgia location has a planned annual capacity of 3.5 gigawatts.

“This facility, along with its sister factories in Ohio, will form part of the industrial foundation that helps ensure this transition is powered by American innovation and ingenuity,” said CEO of First Solar Mark Widmar.

Two New Biotech Facilities for Connecticut, Texas

In a major win for Connecticut’s growing biotechnology sector, Bio-Techne Corporation officially opened its new immunoassay manufacturing facility in Wallingford. The new 52,000 square-foot facility will allow increased capacity of immunoassay cartridge production to 500,000 cartridges per year, which are used for clinical and research purposes across neuroscience, cell and gene therapy, immunology and oncology. The new site also increases Bio-Techne’s cleanroom space to 9,500 square feet.

Said Chuck Kummeth, President and Chief Executive Officer of Bio-Techne. "This expanded immunoassay cartridge capacity positions Bio-Techne to meet current and future global demand for automated, high-quality, extremely sensitive and highly reproducible immunoassays run on our Ella system."

In another nod to the biotech sector, Scorpion Biological Services, opened its new state-of-the-art facility in San Antonio, Texas. Operating both as a contract development & manufacturing organization (CDMO) and integrated contract research (CRO) facility, the new operation will be focused on the development of biologic drugs.

David Halverson, President of Scorpion, said, "After more than 18 months of tireless work, preparation, dedication from our excellent team, and support from the San Antonio community, we have finally arrived at this moment where we can cut the ribbon, open our doors, and get to work. This facility will be at the forefront of American biomanufacturing, developing clinical and commercial-scale large molecules, so we can help our clients bring their biologic innovations from the lab to the clinic and to the patients that need them.

Automotive Supplier Rolls into Michigan

In Michigan, global systems integrator and Hitachi, Ltd. subsidiary JR Automation announced plans this month to open a new manufacturing facility in Lake Orion. Encompassing 228,000 square feet, this new enterprise will consolidate existing Detroit Area facilities into this one site, which will focus on machine shop capabilities and smaller automation projects.

Innovative Detection Tech Company Officially Opens in Georgia

Meanwhile, in Georgia, Salvus LLC, officially opened a new facility this month in Valdosta. Salvus LLC, a CJB company that specializes in detection technology, has developed the world’s first handheld chemical and biological interferometric detector, which can quickly identify chemical and biological substances in liquid, air, or surface environments. This detection technology caught the interest of the USDA, which is working with Salvus to explore agricultural and food safety applications, such as the detection of Salmonella during poultry processing.

"We are proud to take the next step in our evolution as Salvus in opening our new facility that will enhance our research capabilities, power our testing capacity and deliver on our mission to detect our customers' concerns," said Clinton Beeland, president and CEO of Salvus.

The new facility will employ 60-75 workers once operational.

Optics Innovator Opens New Arizona Plant

VIAVI Solutions, a provider of network test, monitoring, and assurance solutions for a wide range of industries, officially opened its new production facility in Chandler, Arizona this month. Representing an investment of $100 million, the new plant is expected to create hundreds of new jobs for the region. The new Chandler operation will help VIAVI operated its range of sophisticated optics equipment.

“VIAVI is a global company in every sense of the word,” commented CEO Oleg Khaykin. “That means setting up in key locations around the world is critical to our success, and we’re always sure to contribute to the communities in which we operate. Establishing a major hub in Chandler, Arizona, will not only expand our involvement in the local optics ecosystem but ramp up our U.S. manufacturing capabilities considerably.”

Small-Batch Snack Maker Goes Big with New Wind-Powered Facility

Turning to the food processing sector, baked snack manufacturer Bobo’s officially opened its new wind-powered manufacturing facility in Loveland, Colorado. With the aim to combine the latest in baking automation with small-batch, hand-baked quality, the new facility will help meet growing demand of Bobo’s bars, bites, and toaster pastries, expanding capacity threefold. Among the facility’s custom automation equipment is a device called the “Bobot” which tamps the bars into the signature Bobo pan.

"It's truly amazing to think back to when my daughter, Bobo, and I baked that first batch of oat bars in my kitchen," said Beryl Stafford, Founder of Bobo's. "It's extremely rewarding to see how far we've come today as we stay true to that same home baked, handmade quality, only now in 24 ovens!”

The new 120.000 square-foot facility will be entirely wind-powered, helping Bobo reach its goal of achieving 100% carbon neutrality this year.

Two New EV Battery Manufacturing Facilities Break Ground in November

Nanotech Energy announced it has broken ground on a new manufacturing facility in Chico, California. Nanotech Energy specializes in graphene-based storage products, used to create electronics sch as lithium-ion batteries and printed electronics. The new facility will help Nanotech Energy further its goal of brining safer, non-flammable lithium-ion batteries to market.

Chief Operating Officer, Scott Laine said at the groundbreaking ceremony "Battery companies globally are racing to create this type of technology by 2030. We are ready to bring it to market now."

And in other EV battery news, high-tech advanced mobility company Canoo announced plans to build a new EV battery manufacturing plant in Pryor, Oklahoma. Canoo chose the Pryor location to be closer to the company’s future MegaMicro factory, which is slated to employ 2,000 workers.

Truck Body Maker Opens Second Wisconsin Facility

In Wisconsin, Marion Body Works, a manufacturer of commercial truck bodies, fire & emergency apparatus, custom engineered vehicles and defense bodies, officially opened its new manufacturing facility in Shawano, celebrating with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on October 21st. The new 113,000 square-foot facility is Marion’s second Wisconsin plant, and is looking to hire 50 employees between its Shawano and Marion locations.

“This new manufacturing space is a huge step for the Marion Body Works family. I say family because that truly captures the culture of our team,” said Curt Ignacio, president and CEO of Marion Body Works. “At Marion Body Works, we make sure our employees have the tools they need to be successful, and this space will allow them to do just that, while also allowing us to better meet the needs of our customers.”

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