MERCIAL HOUSES. F. H. FAULDING & CO., LTD. MANIFOLD ACTIVITIES.
Machinery that will handle two tons of Epsom salts a day, prepared and packed, much of it in 1-oz packets, that will turn out tablets at the rate of 20,000 per
hour, accurately tested, graded, and weighed, and pills at almost double that speed, not lo mention hundreds of bottles of cordials, perfumes, oils, essences and disinfectants every day, bespeaks a tre- mendous volume of business. Even these things, however, are but a small portion of the manifold activities of F. H. Faul- ding & Co.. Limited, who have been established at their present headquarters in King William-street for 79 years. Until 1880 they claim lo have been the only wholesale druggists in South Australia. The foundors of the great firm, one of the largest wholesale druggists and manufac- turing chemists in Australia and cer tainly the oldest business of the kind in the Commonwealth, are dead long since, but there are one or two old employes still who remember them as elderly and kindly gentlemen of the great mid-Vic- torian era, when they themselves were
office boys and messengers in the depart- ments over which they now hold sway. Mr. Faulding in 1844 established a drug- gists' business on the present King Wil-. liam-street site, and some years later he was joined by Mr. L. Scammell, who had oome to Australia to practise his pro- fession as a surgeon, having completed his medical training at Guy's Hospital, Lon- don. Under their joint control the business flourished for many years, and the medical needs of not only the South Australian colonists, but to a great extent those of the other States, were supplied by the KIng Wil- liam-street house. In 1868 the business was reorganised. Mr. Philip Dakers and Mr. Robert Foale being taken into part- nership. The former was at once sent to London. where he established a buying agency on behalf oi the firm in Basing- hall-street. This arrangement lasted for 20 years, when Mr. Dakers returned to Adelaide and the partnership was dis- solved by mutual consent. Messrs. W. T. and L. K. Scammell, F.C.S., takinc over the business. Inter-State Expansion. The new directors immediately recog- nised the possibilities of trade in Western Australia, and an agency was established at Perth. In 1894 L. R. Scammell personally visited Western Australia in order t0 reorganise the business there, and Mr. W. W. Garner, C.B.E., then a young employe of the firm, was chosen as the Western Australian representative. and at less than 24 hours' notice he left for his new post. Mr. Scammeli on ar- rival was faced with the fact that there was no suitable building available in Perth and he was compelled to purchase an eight-years' lease of a building at a
high figure. Within five years. however, the firm had acquired a fine block of land in Murray-street. Perth, where there is now a fine building with 100 feet frontage to Murray-street with a depth of 180 feet. A splendid laboratory has also been erec- ted in Lord-street. Six years after the reorganisation of the Western Australian business another branch was opened in O'Connell street. Sydney. In 1922 the premises, which were part of a trust estate, were sold to a Japanese firm, and Faulding and Co., Ltd.. decided to build its own premises at Redfern, where a block of land 180 feet square was obtained, on which an imposing warehouse and laboratory have already been erected. The Adelaide premises have always re- mained the business centre of the com- pany's activities, and they have been en- larged to meet its ever-growing needs. The frontage to King William-street is one of the most valuable business sites in the city, and as the years have passed fresh properties have been acquired until now the building, whlch is L-shaped, has a depth of 260 feet, with a frontage io James-place of 86 feet, widening to 98 feet at the back. A covered gallery with frosted glass windows runs the full length of the building from King William-street. and opening off this gallery are the elegant private display rooms of the firm. The whole may be best descrlbed as a collec- tlon of wharehouses under the one roof, with a floor space of no less than 84,000 square feet, | Further Headway. During this week further additions and alterations have been begun, and a hand-
some building off the James-place area is course of construction. The big manufacturing works of the firm are situated at Thebarton, where tho output of drugs, scents, soaps &c is carried on under the best possible conditions. The machinery is all of the most delicate and accurate description and its diversity can be judged by the fact that while some of it is cap- able of treating a couple of hundredweight of salt at a time, some is used for weighing the tiniest of pills and tablets. Up-to-Date Methods. At the King Wiliiam-street establish- ment may be witnessed the process of manufacture for pills, the mass ingredients of which are accurately tested, weighed and mixed by machinery. In weighing, once the balance is adjusted it is quite impossible to weigh either more nor less' than the quantity for which the weight has been fixed. Once mixed, the pill "mass" is fed to a small machine with wide rubber bands which knead and com- press it first into a flat cake, and then roll it into long pencil-like tubes, which are again accurately brokcn into small pieces, to be rolled in turn into the fami- liar pill shape by the same ingenious little machine. By a special system of adjust- ment all pills under or over the required weight are dropped into "reject" boxes and only the correct ones are delivered. These in due course go to the great re- volving copper pans, strangely reminiscent of a confectioner's outfit. The copper receptacles are kept con- tinually moving, and the pills are rapidly revolved in a sugar-coating solution which applies an even layer of sweetness. A strange and oven-like liitle receptacle is busily employed in forming gelatine cases for some pills and tablets, and the process of depositing lhe gelatine is ex- ceedingly delicate. An ingenious machine not only makes the familiar junket tablets but deposits them in close-packed rows in glass tubes, thus eliminating the work of packing and counting. Other machines are busily engaged in counting tablets and pills, and in delivering them in specified quantities. Experts at Work Tlie whole scene is most fascinating, and it is evident that every man at work in the room is an expert. It is computed that in dry drugs, chemicals and scientific apparatus alone the firm carries more than 4,000 lines, and many of these are manufactured on the premises. At Thebarton the work 0f extracting the famed eucalyptus oil under the best conditions is wonderfully interesting. To Mr Luther Scammell, F.C.S., the pre- sent head of the firm, is due much of the credit for tlie discovery of the wonderful value of eucalyptus. As a matter of fact, Faulding & Co.'s test for the purity of eucalyptus oil has been adopted by the British Pharmacoepia. and by every text- book in the world dealing with essential oils. Mr. Scammell's belief in the efficacy of eucalyptus led to the experiments which
resulted in the production of solyptol which, in soluble form, disinfectant, soap, &c. is a product with a world-wide market. Mr. Scammell's father, with Mr. Thomas Hardy aud Sir Samuel Davenport, was in- strumental in starting the olive oil in- dustry in South Australia. Mr. Luther Scammell recalls the time when as a !ad he worked the old home-made lever press with which the olive oil was first obtained. Great quantities of the finest eucalyptus oil are produced at Thebarton, where the most modern machinery obtained is in use. Here, too, the milk emulsion which takes the place of the rancid tasting cod liver oil of our youth is emulsified under enormous pressure. Toilet Requisites. In another part of the building frag- rant with the scent of essential oils the eau-de-cologne and lavender and musk, in which the firm specialises, are distilled. Elsewhere again the balms, syrups and flavorings for confections and drinks are imanufactured. All sorts of toilet neces- sities and luxuries, creams, powders, lotions, bath crytals. and so on are manufactured and put up by Faulding & Co. in a manner quite equal to that of famous Continental firms. All the artis- tic boxes and labels are produced on the premises, and the designs are all original, the firm employing a gifted artist at the head of the de- signing department. In this manner they are able to assure clients of ex- clusive designs, if required, in the appear- ance of certain lines. It is no surprise to find that there are over 200 hands on the South Australian pay-roll alone. Wherever possible Australian products are utilised, the directors having always held that the value of a business to the community is to be judged more by its beneficial as- sistance to local industries than by the mere possibilities of its monetary returns. Other Departments. In addition to the business of manufact- uring chemists, however, Faulding & Co. act also as manufacturers' agents. In the dental department alone in addition to the latest chairs, appliances and instruments, a stock of over 300,000 artificial teeth shows the growth of this one section alone. First- aid cabinets designed for Australian needs and particularly suitable for use on out- back stations, are stocked. There is a "Hurry Department" where drugs such as ether, creolin, &c., are packed ready for immediate issue. All drugs requiring extra care or cool storage conditions are kept in the spacious basements of the warehouse. The new building, now in course of erec- ' tion will enable the firm to extend its activities still further, and handsome plate-glass display windows will enable the public to realise some of Australia's achievements in the application of the principles of scientific chemistry. For in- stance, it is stated that the four gold medals gained by the firm at the last Franco-British Exhibition constitute a world's record for any firm, inasmuch as only four productions were entered for competition, and in every case these won against the world. The four products chosen for competition as best representing the activities of Faulding & Co. were Soiyptol soap. milk emulsion, Solypto!, and eucalyptus oil. Their success was a justifi- cation not only of the firm but of scientific Australian industries. The proprietors de- . cided two years ago that the firm should be formed into a limited liability company, in which the more yonthful members of the firm might also find room for the ex- presslon of their business ideas. This was done accordingly, and Messrs. R. B. Scam- mell, BSc. (son of Mr. W. J. Scammell) of Sydney, and Messrs. A. F. and R. G. Scammell (sons of Mr. Luther Scamme) were ap- pointed to the directorate, and in Perth tho son of Mr. W. W. Garner, C.B.E., has also been appointed a director of the West Australian business. The success of the business founded by their fathers and grandfathers is to be found, not merely in the annals of Fauld- ing & Co. but in the annals of the State in which they represent, not merely a busi- ness, but an industry, or, properly speak- ing, a number of industries. How far- reaching the effect of this may be is shown by the fact that, in addition to the Syd- ney and Perth branches of the business not to mention the offices, warehouses and factory in London (for which Mr. W. T. Treadway is representative, the firm has agencies also in South Africa, India, Singa- pore, and New Zealand, and many of its products are marketed throughout the world
Mr. B. B. SeammeT.
Mr. A. F. ScanumoiL
Mr. B. G. Scammell.