Guest author: Akshay B. Chikodi | Country Head – Sales | Optima India Packaging Machines Pvt. Ltd.

The Indian market has lured pharmaceutical and allied players from across the globe. The pharma and biopharma market in India is experiencing an impressive period of growth with many local pharma and biopharma manufacturers expanding operations and several global pharma companies establishing their presence in the country in recent years. This leads to a great demand for pharma packaging components, with a growing market for the primary packing of injectable medicines.

Every day, injectable drugs are administered to improve the lives of millions of patients around the world. Amongst all packaging materials, primary packaging for parenteral drugs has the highest quality standard. It is not easy to choose a primary packaging material for parenteral drugs and the job of the pharma company is quite complicated. The primary packaging suppliers are working with cutting edge technology, have expertise in global regulatory compliance with a knowledge base of pharma drug products, testing, development, packaging and delivery.

Primary packaging for parenterals can be made of either glass or polymer. In the past few years, the pharma market has been driven by an increased development of biopharmaceuticals, which usually pose a higher requirement on the container, in terms of extractable and leachable content. This is why, a known material like glass, with a long history, is now looked at in a new light. While choosing a primary packaging for their drug product the pharma company has to evaluate several quality criteria.

The next step is to have an eco-friendly, sustainable packaging which ensures better protection of material compared to conventional packaging. Certain products are produced by complex chemical synthesis. The challenges associated with conventional processes are that these involve the use of toxic solvents and chemicals as well as generate considerable amount of non-biodegradable wastes.

Pharma companies are working towards and are successful in countering the above environmental concerns, by eliminating toxic solvents and chemicals in the process and still deliver stable products. This paradigm shift from conventional packaging to innovative packaging further offsets carbon footprints and at the same time provides an option of better and greener packaging, thus improving the well-being of people and the planet.

To conclude, every industry and its market looks to the government for injecting the right policies which will drive the business and the Indian pharmaceutical industry looks forward to the roll out of the following – Goods and Sales Tax (GST), new foreign trade policy, API/Bulk drug policy, clinical trial regulations, price control…etc and expects that the process will be speedy, smooth and transparent.

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