Terumo Medical Corp., a Japanese maker of disposable medical products that has a major manufacturing facility in Cecil County, announced that the plant is undergoing a $27 million expansion.
The project will permit Terumo to produce several new product lines and provide 29 new jobs, according to the Maryland Department of Economic and Employment Development. Terumo currently employs 478 workers at its 417,000-square-foot plant, which is in Elkton.
"The Terumo Medical Corp.'s goal is to eventually produce 80 to 90 percent of Terumo Corp.'s products for sale in North, Central and South America" at the Elkton plant, Jim Tanaka, manager of general affairs for the plant, said yesterday.
News of the expansion was timed to coincide with Gov. William Donald Schaefer's 15-day economic development trip to the Far East, now in progress.
While in Japan, the governor attended a special lunch held in his honor at Terumo's Shonan Research and Development Center in Nakai-Machi, Kanagawa Prefecture.
Among other things, Terumo's expansion will set up a technologically advanced production line for plastic blood collection vials. The Tokyo-based firm also makes syringes and catheters.
Maryland and Terumo have strong economic ties that go back to 1974.
That year, Terumo set up shop in Elkton with Owens Illinois Inc. in a joint venture to make blood sampling equipment. Plant personnel were trained under the Maryland Industrial Training Program, which utilized a $500,000 state matching grant.
In addition, a state industrial revenue bond helped fund construction of the manufacturing facility.
The joint venture between Owens Illinois and Terumo ended in 1980, and Terumo assumed sole ownership of the Maryland plant. It has grown steadily since.