Senior Trump and Biden officials knew for months about problems at vaccine plant

The analysis, which came on the heels of an April 2020 inspection by the Food and Drug Administration, said Emergent only had a fraction of the necessary experienced personnel to oversee quality control and technology transfer operations for Covid-19 vaccine production. The company had already agreed to manufacture J&J’s vaccine and was negotiating a similar deal with AstraZeneca.

The saga underscores the United States’ lack of contract manufacturing capacity to produce critical life-saving drugs and vaccines during a worldwide pandemic. It also raises questions about whether pharmaceutical companies or the federal government could have done more to prevent contamination at Emergent given its critical role fighting a global public-health emergency…

Despite the early and detailed warnings, former federal officials say there were few companies that had the capacity to help produce Covid-19 vaccines and Emergent was a natural pick for the job. The company also had long ties to Kadlec from his previous contracting work and had earlier picked up a profitable federal contract to produce smallpox vaccines, The Washington Post reported last year.