Continued Growth in Oregon’s Bioscience Industry Again Cited by International BIO


CONTACT: Dennis McNannay, Executive Director, Oregon Bioscience Assoc., (503) 548-4432
Dianne Danowski Smith, Oregon Bio board member, (503) 201-7019


Oregon continues as a high growth state, gaining in employment, wages and establishments, according to the world’s leading organization for biotechnology and life sciences, the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO)

(Portland, Ore.) — After three years of a downward recessionary impact on the bioscience industry across the U.S., Oregon kept an overall positive pace in employment growth and wage gains in the biotechnology and life science sectors, according to the BIO/Batelle State Bioscience Industry Development 2012 Report released last week. The Oregon Bioscience Association (Oregon Bio) established the same pattern in its local economic impact review.

Overall, Oregon saw important gains from 2001 to 2010 in three key areas: By 11.8 percent, to 762, in the number of bio-related establishments; by 30.6 percent in employment; and by 7.6% in the average annual wage, to $57,185, making Oregon’s bio industry job wages higher by almost 15% than other private sector employment.

Oregon was one of 34 states that showed year-over-year job gains from 2001 through 2010 as the report states (on page 120-121), “Oregon bioscience industry is sizable and growing at a rapid rate. Over the decade, the state increased employment in the biosciences by nearly 31 percent and maintained a growth trajectory even during the later, more difficult economic period of 2007 through 2010 (up 8 percent). Though Oregon does not have a specialized employment concentration in any on subsector, it is clearly emerging in each of the five major components with strong overall job gains since 2001 in each.”

Peter Murray, site executive and vice president for one of Oregon’s largest medical device manufacturers, Welch Allyn, and the 2012 Oregon Bio board chairman said, “While this growth may feel slow or even invisible here in Oregon, it’s clear from year to year Oregon has bucked the national recession and stayed steady in growth in this important sector.”

Employment gains in the five components or benchmarks for national comparison from 2001 to 2010 comprise Agricultural Feedstock and Chemicals (Oregon grew employment by 67 percent); Drugs and Pharmaceuticals (Oregon grew employment by 14 percent); Medical Devices and Equipment (Oregon grew 31 percent); Research, Testing and Medical Laboratories (Oregon grew by 53 percent) and
Bioscience Related Distribution (Oregon grew by 16 percent).

“We continually track the bioscience industry’s growing industry economic impact on Oregon,” said Oregon Bio’s Executive Director, Dennis McNannay. “The fact is, this industry is faithfully producing good quality jobs for Oregonians. The academic universities, labs, community colleges, biotech companies, laboratories and inventors all contribute to a more diversified, stronger industry than at any other time.”

When compared with other major knowledge economy industries, which are critical for advancing high quality jobs, the bioscience industry has led in job creation nationally during the 2001 to 2010 period, the report found. It also outlines the 6.4% job growth in the national sector from 2001 to 2010, while the overall U.S. economy recorded a 2.9% decline in jobs.  The report also noted job growth slowed nationally in the years between 2007 and 2010. However in that time period Oregon is only one of eight states that grew the most, by more than five percent or 30 percent growth for Oregon between 2001 and 2010 (see page 11 in the report).

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