in Mexico. As countries like China become more advanced, labor rates are increasing. Add in the international cost of trade,
and that is making Mexico look very viable for outsourcing. Some
contract businesses may see this as a potential drain on revenue,
but the top molding leaders consider this as just a new source of
business. Mexico is opening a new market for well established
U.S. molding and tooling providers. Mexico does not yet have the
experience or depth to create precision tooling.
“At Marman, we capitalize on that. We offer customers who
are taking production to Mexico a special contract on tooling that
gives both sides benefits,” said Rozuk.
“But even as more OEM companies are moving their volume
production molding to Mexico, they are still keeping their more
difficult molding projects, prototypes, and of course, testing of
new, final product assemblies and all the certifications they need
to address in the U.S.A. We have established a presence with the
medical cluster in Mexico. It is valuable to
stay a part of this so we always know what is
going on. We can keep a finger on the pulse
of any shifts in the market,” he explained.
“We are also providing Mexican molding
companies with tooling support such as re-
pairs, refurbishment, and new tool builds.
You have to be willing to follow the indus-
try, to change, or you will die. You may not
always like the evolution of industry trends,
but you have to embrace it.”
There will always be a need for both out-
sourced production and the detailed preci-
sion only top-tier service companies can
provide. “As for the outsourcing trend, I see
our customers want both quality and the
regulatory addressed when outsourcing,”
said Schwenker. “At Saint-Gobain, our cus-
tomers don’t just want a product delivered
to their doorstep, they want a validation that
will stand up to FDA scrutiny. That is a trend
that is changing the face of medical device
molding today more than anything else. The
need for precise documentation and valida-
tion is really important. We put a lot of in-
vestment into our regulatory and quality
structure. That way, we can be true partners
to our medical device OEMs.”
MedAccred is a growing, new watchdog for
the medical device industry and the molding
area is part of this. While not a mandated entity yet, an increasing number of medical device
companies are actively participating in the MedAccred program. It is an industry managed,
consensus-driven approach to ensuring critical
manufacturing process quality throughout the
medical device supply chain.
In today’s world of global manufacturing, the supply chain is often multi-tiered
and geographically remote, making oversight challenging and costly. Gardner,
Mass.-based Biomedical Polymers Inc.
(BMP) has recently signed on to become
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