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Larchwood Plant To Get New Owner, Remain Open

Larchwood, Iowa — A northwest Iowa facility slated for closure will remain open, with new ownership on the horizon.


Elanco Animal Health announced a year ago it would close its facility in Larchwood. Elanco employed more than 130 people at the plant at the time and planned to move production to its plant in Fort Dodge.

The former head of engineering for the Larchwood operation, Eric Schuler has formed a new company, with plans to buy the facilities in northwest Iowa from Elanco. He tells us what happened after the September 2017 announcement.


The new company is called Vos Bio-Tech, and is based in Harrisburg, SD. Schuler says Elanco will continue to operate the Larchwood plant through the end of 2019. He tells us what Vos Bio-Tech is doing in the meantime.


Schuler says there are more facilities in the local area that are part of the acquisition, and he tells us more about the timeline.


He tells us what they hope to accomplish.


According to Schuler, they are looking for opportunities in large animal vaccines first, like the plant has done since it opened in 1979. But he says should that not develop or if there is not enough of that kind of work, there are several other biotech areas that the plant could branch into.

Schuler says they hope to retain as many employees as possible. He says when employees are separated from Elanco, Vos BioTech will have the opportunity to hire them.


The plant opened as Grand Labs in 1979. In 2003 it was purchased by Novartis. Elanco bought it in 2015.

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