Probiotic developer Synbiotic Health, based in Lincoln, NE, has acquired a new facility in Madison, WI. The 43,000 sq. ft. facility, which will focus on scale-up and development of efficient commercial processes, is expected to begin operations in May 2023. Project planning, design, procurement, and construction O'Neal Inc. of Greenville, SC is working on the project.
Lab Manager spoke to Kevin Hooper, director of business development, and Steve Prescott, chief commercial officer, about the design and construction of this facility.
Q: What was the need for this facility? Is it replacing an outdated existing facility or accommodating new research/ a new program?
A: This facility will allow Synbiotic Health to develop its own commercially viable fermentation processes for its pipeline of probiotic strains. Having this capability in-house will allow Synbiotic Health to quickly screen newly discovered strains for growth, potency, and stability increasing our speed to market.
Q: Is there anything particularly unique or groundbreaking about your facility or the design plan?
A: The facility is being designed from the ground-up to be a state-of-the-art probiotic development facility that can quickly screen ingredients for fermentation media, enumeration, identification, and evaluating stability.
Q: What sorts of challenges did you encounter during the design/build process, and how did you overcome them?
A: The current global supply chain challenges have added uncertainty into the lead-time of equipment and building supplies but through detailed planning all the long lead-time items were ordered in advanced for starting construction.
Q: If a similar facility or program were to look at your lab for inspiration, what do you think they will take away as an example of what they should also implement in their own lab?
A: Having a facility dedicated to the commercial scale up of novel probiotics, staffed with world-class scientists, and not incombered with side projects is a luxury that most do not have.