Novo turns to new factories to boost supply of obesity drug

Two more factories will begin producing Novo Nordisk’s Wegovy next year after manufacturing issues and high demand left the obesity drug in short supply, CEO Lars Fruergaard Jørgensen said in an interview on Wednesday.

Photo: Mads Claus Rasmussen//

Wegovy, which was approved about a year ago after helping patients lose about 15% of their body weight in research trials, is seen as a key new avenue of growth for the Danish company best known for its diabetes medications.

Yet the company hasn’t been able to meet early demand for the drug. That is in part because of manufacturing issues but also because of how high interest in the treatment has been, Jørgensen told Bloomberg in New York. Obesity drugs have long been under-utilized due to safety concerns with older treatments. Companies like Novo and Eli Lilly & Co. have been trying to revitalize the field by introducing repurposed diabetes drugs that have been shown to help people lose weight.

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