Victoria’s reputation as a global centre for pharmaceutical manufacturing is growing, with Australia’s only locally owned medicinal poppy processing company expanding to around the clock operations and creating 20 new jobs.

TPI Enterprises (ASX:TPE) moved its global HQ and factory from Tasmania to Victoria in 2014 with the support of the Victorian Government. That factory is now set to increase production to meet global demand for medicines to treat pain. This story from Australia’s Channel Nine provides a closer look at the operations of TPI’s factory.

Australia is the world’s biggest legal producer of medicinal opium poppies, and TPI Enterprises is one of only a small number of companies in the world capable of taking poppies from plant form to tablets and pain management products.

TPI Enterprises is part of Victoria’s booming medtech and pharmaceutical sector that currently generates $1.35 billion in exports, a figure that has doubled since 2011.

In 2016 the World Health Organization estimated that 5.5 billion people have little or no access to controlled medicines for the treatment of moderate to severe pain, such as post-operative or cancer-related pain.

At the same time, global health care spending is projected to grow by over four per cent per annum in the coming years, so there is an urgent need for technologies, goods and services that improve patient care.

In 2016 the Victorian Government released its Medical Technologies and Pharmaceuticals Sector Strategy to leverage Victoria’s high-quality capabilities and grow the sector on a global scale.

Identified as one of Victoria’s key Future Industries, the medtech and pharmaceutical sector employs more than 23,000 Victorians and generates more than $12.5 billion in revenue each year.