- Can you tell us about your profile and how long you have been with the company for?
I joined the company in 2001 for my end of Master’s in Health Biology internship where I specialised in ‘Developing Pharmaceutical and Nutritional Products’ at the University of Clermont-Ferrand, France. For the past 19 years, I have progressed in the company. At first, I managed the supply and quality of packaging items and subsequently moved on to develop them.
- How does your department work?
The Packaging Department comprises three people: 2 packaging coordinators who manage creating and changing the design of our packaging and those of our external customers. For my part I develop new packaging and manage research and development.
- Do you have a transversal relationship with the other departments of the company?
We have many contacts:
- Marketing for choosing designs and managing the graphic charter of our products
- Transposition for carrying out trials for new packaging and/or materials
- Purchasing for selecting and the technical follow-up of packaging suppliers
- At what moment do you intervene during the development of a product?
We intervene at every stage of developing a product and of its life:
- During the feasibility stage: In order to assess if the packaging can be made on our production lines, with an existing item or if we must plan on specifically developing and estimate the costs.
- During the development phase: to finalise the specifications depending on the product and its technical constraints.
- During the entire life of the product: to generate changes to the design or the variations of the product.
- Do you supply distinctive guarantees regarding the quality of your packaging?
All of our packaging items are selected to provide the products we manufacture with the best possible protection (e.g. High-barrier blister films for moisture-sensitive products) and to guarantee perfect consumer safety (compliant with European regulations regarding suitability for food contact).
- Do you adapt packaging according to specific product criteria, such as galenics, for example?
Indeed, we develop packaging in close cooperation with the galenic form developers: it must take the shape, size and sensitivity constraints of the product’s galenic form into consideration. It often happens that a product which is initially planned to be in tablet form becomes a capsule or even a sachet of powder. The packaging must follow and adapt to the associated constraints.
- As experts in the probiotic field, how do you package these very fragile ingredients?
We have several possibilities for specific packaging for this type of product:
For blisters we use high-barrier films which give a very high level of impermeability to water vapour.
For pill boxes, we use highly waterproof items which we can couple with humidity absorbers integrated in the lids.
- With environmental awareness raising, are you getting more and more requests for ecologically designed solutions? How do you answer them?
Eco-responsibility is indeed becoming a more and more important issue for our customers. We are exploring and have already implemented several paths: defining the most suitable dimensions of the packaging for the product, reducing the weight of the components (e.g. reducing the weight of our pill dispensers and boxes), using recycled cardboard or that from sustainably managed forests, using recycled or plant-based materials…
- Does eco-design apply to all dietary supplement packaging?
Theoretically yes, but we are sometimes limited by technical and economic constraints. We always also have to keep in mind the main objective of the packaging: guaranteeing the best protection of the packaged product.
- How do you see innovation in future packaging? Are you working on innovative projects at the moment?
For me, packaging innovation will be eco-responsible, with a high level of technology integrating a 2.0 aspect.
I am working on these three axes but I can’t go into detail at the moment!
- If you were to give some advice on how to choose a packaging supplier?
The selection criteria for a packaging supplier are:
- The quality of their products and their manufacturing system.
- Their capacity to fulfil our requirements in terms of deadlines, cost and reactivity.
- The level of innovation and the technical solutions they can provide.
- And lastly their commitment to being environmentally responsible.
Are you planning to develop a new product? Feel free to contact us.