Between COVID-19 diagnostics, treatments, and vaccines, the life sciences supply chain has been quite busy during the past year. The surge of pandemic-related activity, along with growth in bioproduction and other segments of the life sciences industry, has brought with it an unprecedented demand for supplies.
Across the industry, manufacturers and suppliers are working to fulfill orders of at least double the volumes seen before COVID-19. Corning Life Sciences, for example, has seen orders for some products grow by 200 percent. Demand for automation tips, microplates, cryogenic vials, and tubes for testing kits are especially high.
This huge demand, when paired with raw material shortages, disruption to freight services, and government directives, has created delays at nearly every point in the supply chain — from raw material suppliers, to manufacturers, to distributors, and, ultimately, to scientists.
Corning Life Sciences has been aggressively expanding its production capacity and processes to minimize the impact of these changes. Even so, the supply chain will likely continue to be stretched thin for a while yet.
Lydia Kenton Walsh, Corning's Vice President of Commercial and Business Operations, explains.