With sustainability at the forefront of most people’s thoughts, the pharmaceutical business is under tremendous pressure to change its global impact significantly. Pharmaceutical items require a lot of packaging, so we’re re-evaluating our operations to determine where we can make improvements to help the environment. There are four different forms of pharmaceutical packaging to think about.
Primary pharmaceutical packaging, such as vials, bottles, blister packs, sachets, syringes, and ampoules, is the most difficult to replace with a more ecologically friendly alternative. Plastics, aluminum, and glass are the most prevalent materials used in primary packaging to keep items safe, compliant, and protected.
Packing for the Second Stage
The major function of secondary pharma packaging, which is mostly constructed of paper and carton board, is to safeguard primary packing. It’s also used to promote a brand and, on occasion, to create shop displays. Although paper and carton board are recyclable, plastics can be used for internal packaging and protection.
Packing at the tertiary level
The purpose of tertiary pharmaceutical packaging is to safeguard secondary packing during transportation. Tertiary packaging, like secondary packaging, is primarily constructed of paper, cartons, and corrugated board, however polymers can be used for interior packing.
Ancillary Packing is a type of ancillary packing that is used
Tertiary packing is sealed and secured using ancillary packaging materials. Plastics are used to make items like sticky tape, banding, and shrink wrap. Paper-based products, on the other hand, are becoming more widely available.
Pharma Packaging’s Challenge
Patient and consumer safety is crucial, thus pharma goods and components must be protected and compliance with safety regulations. This restricts how green pharma packaging firms can be, since alternatives to plastic frequently do not provide the same degree of protection and stability for products.
The materials used in pharmaceutical packaging are currently not ecologically friendly. Greener materials are available, but they are less effective and can end up in landfills, posing a risk to the environment and human health.
Biodegradable polymers, such as those manufactured from sugarcane, are gaining popularity as a viable alternative to regular plastics. Bioplastics are broken down by bacteria over time, although most are not biodegradable at home and must be broken down at a factory.
Any drugs left in the packaging of bioplastics that wind up in landfills will be released over time when the bioplastic breaks down, possibly polluting rivers and eventually entering the food chain.
Blister packing is one of the most frequent types of pharmaceutical packaging since it is commonly used to package tablets and capsules. PVC, a hazardous material highlighted by WRAP, is frequently used in blister packets. Its abolition from garbage is a top objective for the Plastics Pact, which aims to make all blister packaging recyclable by 2025.
With patient/consumer safety and compliance as a top priority, a completely sustainable pharma packaging strategy is currently unavailable, but we intend to alter that.
Pharma packaging recycling ecosystem will not only encourage consumer recycling, but also motivate other filling and packaging industries to follow suit. It will also be a big plus for pharmaceutical warehousing.
This will assist to make pharma packaging more sustainable by lowering the environmental effect of packaging items in landfills and reducing the dependency on virgin manufacturing materials.