Viatris ANZ ops head shares insight on advancing sustainability in pharmaceutical manufacturing

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In the pharmaceutical industry, the pursuit of sustainability is not just an ethical imperative; it is an important aspect of ensuring a healthier future for both people and the planet.

At the forefront of this movement stands Viatris Australia, a company dedicated to not only advancing manufacturing practices but also prioritising sustainability in its processes.

Rob Elliot, head of operations at Viatris ANZ, offered insights into the company’s commitment to championing environmental stewardship stating, “Sustainability is fundamental to Viatris’ mission.” He asserted, “We continuously strive to advance responsible and sustainable practices across all our operations.”

At the heart of this commitment lies the manufacturing site in Carole Park, Queensland, developed to align with Viatris’ pledge to reduce environmental impact and promote sustainable operations. Elliot highlighted the integration of new production lines designed for enhanced efficiency, reducing energy consumption in the manufacturing process.

Moreover, Viatris’ dedication to sustainability is underscored by certifications to ISO 14001 (environmental management) and ISO 50001 (energy management), with plans to expand such certifications to other locations, ensuring a comprehensive approach to sustainability across the board.

Navigating global complexity

As a global company, Viatris faces a wide range of challenges in keeping sustainability at the core of its operations. Elliot emphasised the company’s unique capabilities, scientific expertise, and expansive commercial platform spanning over 165 countries and territories.

“The goals are certainly interconnected,” he noted, highlighting Viatris’ commitment to leveraging collective expertise to drive sustainable operations and empower communities worldwide.

Driving change through innovation

Viatris Australia’s dedication to sustainability is demonstrated through its innovative projects, showcasing accomplishments in managing waste and conserving water resources.

In particular, Elliot elaborated on the significant increase in recycling rates at the Carole Park site, attributed to innovative programs such as composting and the procurement of compostable materials.

Moreover, rainwater capture and water recycling initiatives have enabled Viatris to collect and reuse water equivalent to two and a half Olympic pools, showcasing the company’s proactive approach to water conservation.

Empowering people to make a change

Viatris’ commitment to sustainability extends beyond its operations, fostering collaboration with universities to engage students in real-world sustainability challenges. Elliot highlighted the partnership with the University of Queensland, where students contribute to optimising waste management processes, providing tangible benefits for both Viatris and the participating students.

At Viatris, employees play a crucial role in driving environmental stewardship efforts. Elliot emphasised the importance of educating and empowering employees at all levels, equipping them with the knowledge and tools to actively contribute to sustainability goals. From waste reduction initiatives to educational programs, Elliot said Viatris ensures that employees are integral to its sustainability journey.

Looking ahead, Elliot outlined key initiatives, including reducing emissions and expanding renewable energy capabilities, such as the installation of solar PV systems at manufacturing sites.

“Our additional environmental targets include performing water risk assessments for all locations in high or extremely high water-stress areas, accordingly the Carole Park site has undergone a water risk assessment,” he noted.