Supply Security

We offer security of supply by:

  1. Consistently delivering product on-time, within specifications
  2. Observing cGMP compliance with a track record spanning decades
  3. Minimizing business continuity risks, including adherence to the highest European HSE standards

We deliver on our promises to customers by:

  1. Keeping adequate stock of products, intermediates and raw materials
  2. Having robust planning for production and long-term capacity
  3. Designing and validating production processes to achieve flexibility and redundancy where possible
  4. Qualifying multiple suppliers of critical materials where possible, preferably across regions

Continuity is the core of our strategy. Although we have grown and innovated significantly over the course of our history, we have always done this gradually with limited risks and with close attention to all the people involved.

Most of our products are well established. Our extensive experience has enabled us to optimize processes for quality and efficiency.

Most of the equipment in our plant is multi-purpose. Many multi-step processes are executed in separate campaigns with stock of intermediates. This arrangement allows for extra flexibility and supply security compared to dedicated and integrated production lines, which are more common in the production of Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients.

Because our organisation is small and agile, we can adjust planning and execute projects for changes in processes and equipment relatively quickly, without compromising on quality or HSE requirements.

When qualifying suppliers of critical raw materials, we focus on their quality system and the potential impact on the quality of our products. However, we also evaluate how suppliers perform in Health, Safety and Environment and we assess business continuity risks. Our approach is to evaluate risks across the supply chain.

COVID-19 Pandemic and Aftermath

Fortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic had a limited impact on Katwijk Chemie in the period 2020-2022. Our plant operations continued at capacity and the shipments to our customers had little to no delays.

Unfortunately, the quick economic recovery in the second half of 2021, and the Russian invasion of Ukraine in early 2022, have led to very strong increases in the cost of materials, energy and transport and to a reduced availability of several raw materials.

In the second half of 2022 the cost of energy has decreased. However, the cost of most of our raw materials remains at historically high levels.

Industry Perspective

The COVID-19 pandemic seems to have led to a push for more domestic production of pharmaceuticals and Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients, especially in Europe and in the United States. There seems to be more concern about dependence on imports from India and China in particular.

We welcome this discussion. We also welcome the recognition of API manufacturers contributing substantially to society. However, in order to actually improve the security of supply of pharmaceuticals and APIs, we do not believe in the mantra “buy domestically”. We believe in a tailored approach, assessing risks per product across the supply chain. In our view the assessment should be about the number of suppliers in each step of the supply chain, including early stage chemical intermediates, and the supply risk profiles of those specific manufacturers. The assessment should not only look at whether pharmaceuticals and APIs are imported or manufactured domestically.

We do believe that regulators and payors for pharmaceuticals and pharma companies need to strike a good balance between cost and risks. It is often not feasible to strongly drive down costs without compromising on risks for supply security and quality. Environmental impacts and conditions for factory workers should also be considered when making sourcing decisions.