ST. LOUIS, March 5, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Sigma-Aldrich ® Corporation (NASDAQ: SIAL) today announced that SAFC ® ( www.safcglobal.com), its custom manufacturing and services business unit, will expand its manufacturing plant in Irvine, Scotland to include large-scale production of bulk dry power media and reagents. Designed to support the expanding needs of the European and Asia Pacific market, SAFC's Irvine facility expansion will result in redundant manufacturing capabilities in conjunction with SAFC's existing dry powder media facility in Lenexa, KS. The addition of the dry powder milling and blending capability to the Irvine facility will complete the 5-year Capital Expansion Plan SAFC initiated as part of its long-term commitment to supporting customers in the growing industrial biopharmaceutical market. SAFC will construct a purpose-built Animal Component Free (ACF) dry powder media manufacturing facility to complement the existing liquid cell culture media, buffers, and reagents capabilities in Irvine. Ground breaking for the new facility is expected to commence in March 2013 and should be manufacturing-ready in Q1 of 2014. Once complete, the facility will be one of the most modern and fit-for-purpose media facilities in the industry. "Accelerated development schedules have proven to be a critical component of success for our customers. They need a guarantee that the suppliers they work with are in a position to respond rapidly to their unique project requirements," stated Rod Kelley, SAFC Vice President of Manufacturing. "We've applied our know-how and experience, best practices, and current technology to the facility design and approach with the goal to deliver a high-quality product in a manner that supports the efforts of our customers." The facility expansion will also include additional raw material and finished goods warehousing as part of the new manufacturing capability. As with the current Irvine manufacturing and warehouse facilities, the new expansion will also be fully compliant with appropriate US FDA and EU cGMP requirements and comply with local requirements with regard to safety and environmental regulations.