Case Study

GSK – Responsible Antibiotic Manufacturing

Company GlaxoSmithKline plc, United Kingdom
Sub category of Industry R&D Pharma
Category of commitment Environment
Which product(s) Small molecule, Vaccines
Key focus Manufacturing

Health needs

GSK recognises that factory discharges of antibiotics and antimicrobial active materials could contribute to an increase in resistant genes in the environment. GSK is committed to ensuring that discharges of active antibacterials to the environment (both water and land) during manufacturing are at or below science-driven acceptable limits throughout its own manufacturing and supply chains by the end of 2020 at the latest. GSK is also actively investing to reduce the wider environmental impact of its antibiotic manufacturing.

Initiative’s objective

To reduce the environmental impact of GSK’s antibiotic manufacturing. To audit GSK’s own manufacturing and supply chain to verify good practice in managing releases of antibiotic waste streams to water or land and ensure any measures or treatment steps necessary prior to release function appropriately. Work with external technical experts to establish science-driven, risk-based targets for discharge concentrations for antibiotics for water or land. Use a mass balance approach to ensure that GSK’s own manufacturing and supply chains are compliant with agreed acceptable discharge limits. Introduce a contractual requirement that suppliers follow this approach and ultimately terminate those who don’t meet this requirement.To improve the energy efficiency and waste impact at 2 of GSK’s key global antibiotic manufacturing plants (see case study).

Initiative’s description

GSK is carrying out a tailored audit of its antibiotics manufacturing and supply chain. By the end of 2016, GSK will have reviewed all 19 GSK sites, and 29 of its suppliers across 39 production facilities. This audit will ensure all its facilities and suppliers have the appropriate licenses and legal permits in place, in addition to ensuring good practice in: minimising the concentration of antibiotic released in waste streams to water or land; and applying appropriate measures or treatment steps to waste streams prior to discharge to the environment.

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