The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

News

August 30, 2013

Merck reducing work force by 45 at Cherokee plant in Riverside

RIVERISDE – Merck Cherokee Pharmaceuticals of Riverside will be reducing its work force by 45 employees throughout the next three months and by the end of the year, a corporate official confirmed Friday.

The cutbacks will affect operations and support functions including hourly and salaried and union and nonunion employees, said Colleen Lange of global communications public affairs for Merck in West Point.

She said the reduction is part of Merck’s strategy to continue to supply cost-effective products to the world.

Merck announced the move to its employees on Thursday.

“This action is part of our existing strategy and ongoing commitment to aggressively manage our cost structure and streamline our operating model. By doing so, we will ensure that we are able to bring our medicines and vaccines to those who need them while enabling us to deliver long-term value to our patients and shareholders,” the Merck statement, issued by Riverside Plant Manager Brian Killen, said.

Lange said the Riverside plant will continue to focus on producing bulk materials for human antibiotics. The bulk materials are sent to other facilities to produce the final products.

With the work force reduction, she said that will bring the employee total in Riverside to slightly more than 300 by the end of the year.

Lange said the reduction isn’t related to a certain product and that it is “all part of our strategic cost structure.”

She said Merck had announced in October 2012 it planned to sell its fermentation operations in Riverside but to date have not received a valid interest in it.

As a result, Merck plans to decommission the fermentation operations and sell off the equipment, she said.

At Monday’s town hall meeting near Danville, retired Merck employee Jerry Buckley asked U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey if he could help prevent the dismantling of the fermentation processes. Toomey said he would investigate the matter and get back to Buckley.

The Merck plant, at 100 Ave. C, began as Heyden Chemical Corp. during World War II and was leased by Merck in 1950 and later purchased by Merck. It was purchased by Cherokee in 2008 and reacquired by Merck in 2010.

 

1
Text Only
News
  • crash18.jpg Snyder County collision injures driver, kills two horses

    PORT TREVORTON — A car struck two horses on a rural road in Snyder County Thursday afternoon, injuring the driver and resulting in the death of the horses.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Strike17.jpg Danville teachers hit picket lines

    DANVILLE - It started like any other school day during the year, with teachers up early and arriving at school at 7:30 in the morning.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Snook suspension now a mystery

    MIDDLEBURG — Acting Midd-West Superintendent Daphne Snook is confused about what the school board is alleging she did that led to her suspension without pay, saying she hasn’t received anything in writing. “Nothing I have been told by the board in any way makes me believe that I violated district policy or the law,” Snook said by email Wednesday.

    April 17, 2014

  • Danville teacher strike starts today

    DANVILLE — Nearly four hours of negotiations could not prevent the first teacher strike at Danville in decades.

    April 17, 2014

  • Ruling on torture could save Miranda Barbour's life

    SUNBURY — An attorney for homicide suspect Miranda Barbour filed a motion Wednesday in Northumberland County Court asking a judge to rule that murder victim Troy LaFerrara was not tortured before being killed.

    April 16, 2014

  • Investigation: Weapon used in attack on county prison officers

    SUNBURY — A “homemade metal weapon” was used in the attack against three corrections officers at the Northumberland County Prison on Friday, according to prison officials.

    April 16, 2014

  • Milton woman charged with endangering child

    MILTON — A Milton mom faces two misdemeanors after investigators said her 1-year-old suffered first- and second-degree burns while in her care and she failed to seek medical attention.

    April 16, 2014

  • Sunbury man critically injured in SUV crash

    SUNBURY — A driver was injured Tuesday night when his SUV careened off Mile Hill Road and down a steep 20-foot embankment, knocking over trees until it crashed and twisted around a large tree trunk.

    April 16, 2014

  • SUN Home Health and Geisinger ink merger plan

    NORTHUMBERLAND — Geisinger Community Health Services and SUN Home Health and Hospice announced today the signing of a comprehensive integration agreement by which SUN Home Health & Hospice will become part of the Geisinger health system.

    April 16, 2014

  • College Board provides a glimpse of new SAT

    WASHINGTON — Anxious students — not to mention their parents — can get a heads-up for how the redesigned SAT might look in two years.

    April 16, 2014

The Daily Marquee
Poll

Are you among those who will be completing and mailing your tax forms today?

Yes
No - Already Filed
     View Results
Photo Galleries
The Valley

Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.