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Texas City Spreads Pearly Whites Around the Globe


By Lora-Marie Bernard

Texas City could be creating millions of pearly white smiles around the globe since a local company picked up a toothpaste contract.

The Ashland Specialty Ingredients site in Texas City recently qualified to produce ingredients found in Colgate Optic White toothpaste, said Aaron Cameron, plant manager. “Our business has been strong,” he said.

Cameron provided an update on the site’s business during a recent Citizens Advisory Panel meeting.  In addition to acquiring the toothpaste account, it also received a contract to create a solvent for Tesla’s Model 3 electric cars and a kidney dialysis customer, which he did not elaborate on. “It’s a diverse group of products for us,” he said.

He also announced that the plant will have an October shutdown. “We are spending a lot of time in the summer and fall getting ready for that,” he said. “It will be what we are pretty much going to be focused on for the rest of the year.” Nationally, Ashland recently purchased a Pharmachem Laboratories, he said.  “That’s big for the company,” he said.

In April, Ashland paid $660 million in an all-cash transaction that was expected to be completed before the end of the June quarter, according to a press release.

With annual revenues of approximately $300 million and 14 manufacturing facilities in the United States and Mexico, New Jersey-based Pharmachem develops, manufactures and supplies custom and branded nutritional and fragrance products.

The 38-year-old company boasted some of the best-known consumer brands in the world as customers, said William A. Wulfsohn, Ashland chairman and chief executive officer, in a statement

“The acquisition of Pharmachem offers a number of exciting growth opportunities in higher-margin end markets while also strengthening our specialty product line,” Wulfsohn stated. “This combination will enhance our position in fast-growing nutraceutical end markets, open a new opportunity within fragrances and flavors, and strengthen Ashland’s food ingredient business by adding customized functional solutions.”

According to Dr. Tomislav Meštrović, MD, PhD, the definition of nutraceuticals and related products generally depends on the source. They can be classified on the basis of their natural sources, pharmacological conditions, as well as chemical constitution of the products. Most often they are grouped in the following categories: dietary supplements, functional food, medicinal food, and “farmaceuticals”. ?

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