The UK has just approved the Pfizer/ BioNTech vaccine, meaning doses are expected to start being given to the public next week. But where is the vaccine actually being made?

It’s been just over a year since the first Covid-19 case was reported, and mass immunisations are set to start very soon.

The UK has just become the first country to approve the Pfizer/ BioNTech vaccine, which offers up to 95% protection from Covid-19, and the NHS aims to start rolling out doses from next week.

Matt Hancock told the nation that 800,000 doses will be available in the UK next week, but where are they being made and shipped from?

Photo by Vincent Kalut / Photonews via Getty Images

Where is the Pfizer vaccine being made?

  • Belgium.

Most of the UK’s supply of the vaccine is being produced at Pfizer’s facilities in Puurs, Belgium.

Some does are also being made at BioNTech’s sites in Germany.

Photo Illustration by Valera Golovniov/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

How will the vaccine be shipped to the UK?

To remain effective, the vaccine must be stored at -70C, so the shipping process is very particular.

It will be shipped in special temperature-controlled storage containers that ensure it stays at the correct heat. Each suitcase-sized container will hold 1,000 doses of the vaccine and can keep it at -70C for up to 10 days using dry ice.

Each of the containers will be fitted with a thermal sensor so that its temperature can be monitored, and it can be recharged with more dry ice if necessary.

The vaccine will be shipped by air and road to the UK, but not by boat as it takes too long.

When it arrives in the UK, the vaccines will be delivered to hospitals that have the facilities to store them at -70C. It can then be shipped to GP practices and stored in a fridge for up to five days at 2-8C.

Where is Pfizer headquartered?

  • New York, USA.

Despite most doses of the vaccine being produced in Belgium, Pfizer is actually an American company and its headquarters are in New York.

BioNTech is a Germany company based in Mainz.

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