Video SpotlightGROW in WINNIPEG: Life Sciences
Grow Stronger: Health and Biotech
Winnipeg is a remarkable centre of discovery. Delve into synergies among biotechnology, agriculture and life sciences and you’ll understand why. Case in point: the National Microbiology Laboratory is the only Level 4 bio-containment lab in the country, one of an elite group of just 15 such centres around the world. We’re also host to the International Centre for Infectious Diseases, the Canadian Centre for Agri-food Research in Health and Medicine, and the Richardson Centre for Functional Foods and Nutraceuticals.
On the private side, local innovators have twice been honoured since 2010 with a prestigious Manning Innovation Award for their groundbreaking work in life sciences, and we’re the leading pharmaceutical manufacturing centre in Western Canada. All of this innovation is built on a solid research foundation comprised of the University of Manitoba, about 40 R&D institutions and a growing number of private-sector firms.
Health and biotech organizations grow stronger in Winnipeg.
Winnipeg’s successful life sciences industry benefits from the city’s bio-commercialization resources, business incubators and among the lowest factor costs in North America. A highly supportive provincial government is an active industry partner, helping biotechnology start-ups gain access to capital and offering a variety of support resources.
The sector is comprised of clusters of businesses in five key life science subsectors:
- Medical devices
- Functional foods and nutraceuticals
- Bioproducts (also referred to as industrial biotech)
- Health informatics
Over the past 20 years, entrepreneurs within Winnipeg's biotechnology cluster have created more than 25 globally successful companies, including Valeant Pharmaceuticals International, Intelligent Hospital Systems, and Medicure Inc.
- As a percentage of total workforce, Winnipeg boasts the highest concentration of life science professionals of any city in Canada.
- Companies in Winnipeg’s life sciences sector currently employ approximately 3,500 workers.
- More than 1,800 Winnipeg establishments play a supporting role for the life science industry in the areas of research and development, laboratory research, and scientific and technical services.
- The Canadian functional foods and nutraceuticals industry earns revenues in excess of $3.8 billion annually.
- Winnipeg is home to the largest pharmaceutical manufacturing sector in Western Canada, anchored by three large pharmaceutical/medicine manufacturers: Apotex Fermentation, Valeant Pharmaceuticals International and Vita Health Products.
- Winnipeg has 141 food and beverage manufacturing firms, 13 firms that produce functional foods, 39 establishments that provide support for crop production and 100 establishments engaged in the production of chemical products.