The community of Baldoyle has been dealt a double economic blow by the recent announcement from Sudocrem manufacturer Teva Pharmaceuticals that it will be relocating operations from Baldoyle Industrial Estate to Troyan, Bulgaria, writes Rachel Cunningham.
This will affect a further 110 employees, on top of the 440 local jobs that will be lost in the closure of global healthcare company Viatrus, which was confirmed last December.
Considered a typically Irish product, Sudocrem was invented Thomas Smith in a Cabra pharmacy in 1931 and rapidly became a staple nappy rash solution in every Irish home. Although originally named ‘Smith’s Cream’, later ‘Soothing Cream’, the name we know it as today was said to have been shaped by the mouths of Dubliners, with local pronunciation leading to be changed officially to ‘Sudocrem’ in 1950.
It was sold exclusively in Ireland until the 70s and has since become globally popular, now available in more than 40 countries, with over 34.4 million pots sold worldwide annually.
Sinn Féin TD for Dublin Bay North Denise Mitchell commented: “The announcement is a huge blow to the people of Baldoyle and the wider community of Dublin Bay North. This is devasting for the 110 employees who are losing their jobs. The Sudocrem plant has been operating in Baldoyle for decades.”
Expressing concern regarding the knock-on effect on the local economy, Ms Mitchell continued: “The closure of the plant requires a response from the Tánaiste and relevant government agencies in assisting workers, who now find themselves jobless, in helping them to retrain and upskill. Efforts must to be made to restore employment to this area, which has been devasted by recent losses.”
Teva Pharmaceuticals, which has owned Sudocrem since 2016, has committed to maintaining a strong presence in Ireland. The company confirmed that its respiratory manufacturing plant in Waterford will remain open, in addition to its commercial activities.