Sofrigam made-to-measure pharma packaging solutions
Products & Services | Sofrigam S.A
NOVEMBER 09, 2015
Pharma manufacturers are constantly seeking insulated packaging solutions that reduce shipping costs while increasing efficiency, sustainability and environmental compliance.
It may sound counter intuitive, but made-to measure temperature-controlled transport solutions can be more cost-effective and efficient than standard ‘off the shelf’ insulated packaging.
Sofrigam’s made-to-measure cool chain packaging and insulated containers deliver three particular benefits:
- Closer compliance with detailed cold chain and HSE requirements
- Optimized ratio between payload and overall weight and dimensions
- Better environmental compliance and increased sustainability
Overall cost savings can vary between 10 and 50 per cent.
Increased cold chain and HSE compliance
Manufacturers can use made to measure insulated packaging to prioritize health, safety and environmental compliance during transport of medicines as well as closer compliance with desired cold chain standards.
Before initiating manufacture, Sofrigam’s specialist cold chain engineers analyze the logistical sequence of the medicines (or the products to be transported) in order to define the outside temperature profiles. This allows the ideal old source and insulation to be specified, without adding unnecessary weight to the container or risking the possibility of fluctuations in temperature.
Based on customer dispatch conditions and specifications, Sofrigam can establish ideal packaging properties, along with risks and management levels applicable to the specific logistics chain, including conservation temperature ranges, circuit duration and exposure temperatures, using Aser software to produce the correct temperature profile, based on virtual simulation oaf actual usage.
Sofrigam Packaging Engineer Vincent Bailleul explains: “The flexibility of our manufacturing process allows us to produce products that comply with our customers’ specific demands, guaranteeing high quality and safe storage at temperatures of between +2 °C and +8 °C. “
“If a product with a very low thermal inertia has to be transported, it is perfectly possible to design a container that will maintain the medicine at a constant temperature of +5 °C. Indeed, the cold source inside the container is matched to the thermal inertia of the transported product as well as to the temperature profiles encountered while it is in transit,” adds Bailleul.
Optimize insulated packaging solutions for price, weight and size to payload.
Sofrigam’s ‘customized’ design process seeks to create the most efficient possible insulated container for the volume of pharmaceutical or biotech products to be transported. At the pre-design stage, Sofrigam engineers calculate the ideal ratio between payload and external size to ensure that it will accommodate the maximum number of products.
“We design made-to-measure packaging solutions based on the type of pharmaceutical products to be transported, by assembling different sizes of polyurethane plates. This limits the number of voids in the boxes. Plates can also be adapted to fit air cargo platforms in the case of large-scale exports”, observes Laetitia Perche, Marketing and Communications Manager at Sofrigam.
The high thermal efficiency of polyurethane panels optimizes the payload/external size ratio of the containers and thus limits the amount of cold source required and thus overall container weight. In addition, the container is designed to make pre-assembly and preparation as straightforward and rapid as possible.
More sustainable and environmentally friendly
From choice of raw materials to container design, packaging choices have significant impact on overall environmental performance and sustainability in the pharmaceutical cool chain.
Sofrigam’s elimination of waste also begins at the design change, with systems that allow containers to be designed in 3D CADCAM software to obtain an ideal prototype without using materials.
“The machine tools Sofrigam uses for manufacture can read the design files directly to turn them into physical form,” says Vincent Bailleul.
“The Design Office produces a single computer drawing, without duplication or repetition, and our colleagues in the Production Department use that file to configure the machine tool. The entire cycle is automated, from the design stage until completion of the finished product,” Bailleul adds.
The made-to-measure optimization of cold chain compliance and form to payload also reduce energy use and ecological impact of transporting medicines via the cold chain, while also reducing overall shipping costs.
Sofrigam designs cold chain thermal packaging solutions on an international scale, with designs that offer reduced TCO in line with the global Total Cost of Ownership Initiative.
Sofrigam’s R&D Department, with the assistance of the specialist Ater Métrologie Laboratory, continually devise ever-more efficient packaging solutions that are easy to use, ecologically sound and cost-effective.
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