Selecting the right contract manufacturing and packaging partner is essential in the dynamic and increasingly complex healthcare environment, where changes in regulatory requirements and supply chain advancements routinely influence the marketplace.
As mergers, consolidations and brand-buying continue among pharmaceutical companies and consumer packaged goods brands, customers are looking to CMOs to be experts in research and development, compliance and go-to-market strategies for new products.
Turnkey solutions and speed-to-market are packaging industry watchwords that often head the checklist for consideration when selecting a supplier. But breadth of capabilities, quality assurance, established supply chain relationships and a commitment to continuous improvement and innovation are key ingredients to a lasting partnership with your contract manufacturing and packaging partner.
From regulatory compliance to market preferences for packaging, a true contract manufacturing and packaging partner will be well-versed in the right technology for personal care, OTC, pharmaceuticals, and Medical Device manufacturing and packaging, and will understand the competitive landscape. This type of insight comes only with years of solid experience and trusted industry relationships.
For example, as an aging population and focus on compliance and safety steers healthcare packaging toward options such as easier-to-open containers and self-heating tubes for one-time use, it is important that your contract manufacturing and packaging partner possess the competencies, registrations and relationships that make timely implementation of these trends and transitions possible.
With an overarching commitment to Quality, Multi-Pack SolutionsTM is FDA registered and fully compliant at its Greenville, South Carolina and Milwaukee, Wisconsin facilities. Both are registered with the FDA as a Medical Device & Drug Establishment.
In addition, all three Multi-Pack Solutions facilities, including its Chicago, Illinois location are registered with the EPA and compliant to applicable regulations, including disinfectant wipes.
The Greenville, South Carolina location partners with an industry-recognized ISO certification body to maintain registration and certification to ISO 13485 to meet all Medical Device part 2003 directives and regulations. It also houses a validated USP Grade Reverse Osmosis Purified Water System—a unique feature when compared with other contract manufacturing and packaging companies.
A custom-built mixing suite in Greenville gives Multi-Pack Solutions compounding ability for a wide range of personal care, pharmaceutical, OTC and consumer convenience products. These include products from gels and antibacterial liquids to lotions and creams. Capabilities in the mix room include various tank sizes to accommodate pre-mixes and larger scale batches. Some of the tanks are equipped with an exterior jacket to allow for heating and/or cooling phases for formulas that require it.
The company’s technical expertise and quality directives extend across all three manufacturing facilities, which together handle a variety of manufacturing and packaging capabilities including water-soluble pouches, wet wipes, tubes, bottles, sachets and single packs.
To streamline the supply chain, Multi-Pack Solutions offers expertise in secondary packaging, which eliminates the need for a different company to provide services such as cartoning, coupon and instruction insertion, glue tipping, bundling and POP displays.
Successfully launching a new healthcare product requires expert go-to-market packaging solutions. Multi-Pack Solutions’ assortment of capabilities gives it technical expertise in virtually every product delivery format.
In selecting a contract manufacturing and packaging partner, the first consideration is whether the company has the ability to produce and package your product. Form factor capabilities and the knowledge to manage the complexities of each—from dispensing to labeling—is an important first step. For example, a bottle product launch requires fundamental considerations such as:
What will the dispensing system be? From flip to flat cap, ribbed to smooth, and induction- sealed, a proper opening system must be selected for your product.
What is the product’s flowability? The viscosity of the product and bottle delivery method must work together for optimum dispensing of the bottle contents.
What is the product’s stability? It is important to know how your product stands up under a variety of environmental factors such as temperature, humidity and light. Its shelf life must be evaluated for expiration date validation.
Figure 1: Contract Packaging Science, Bottle Launch
Should the product be sealed? Depending upon the product, its regulatory requirements and the end user, your product may or may not require a seal. Your contract packager must understand
What are the timing requirements? Access to varying bottle sizes and caps is crucial to meeting lead-time structures.
What type of labeling is desired or required? From front and back to wraparound and booklet labels, there are several ways to present your brand. Your contract packager should be able to make recommendations that are the best fit for your product.
Finding a contract packager that can provide trusted guidance in answering all of these questions, and one that will provide an honest assessment of whether your product is a good match for a long-term partnership, is crucial.
At Multi-Pack Solutions, contract packaging is a science. From the shape, size and color of a bottle to the type of shipper case that bottle is housed in, Multi-Pack Solutions draws from decades of experience to offer expert direction.
As technology continues to evolve in healthcare packaging, you want to make certain that your contract packager is on top of the latest advancements in materials, packaging methods and equipment and can offer knowledgeable advice in primary and secondary package design and development with your specific product in mind.
Finding a contract packager with a wide range of capabilities also counts should you wish to expand your brand across multiple formats. A product line extension may be in your future, so selecting a company with technical and practical proficiencies across varying form factors can save you time and money when that time comes.
NEXT WEEK: QUALITY COUNTS
Confidence in your contract packager begins with its commitment to quality. Specialized skills in compliance programs such as calibration, validation, auditing, equipment maintenance and quality management systems should be evident. When selecting a contract manufacturer and packager, the quality checklist should include considerations such as: the contract packager’s ability to provide updates on regulatory requirements, the ability to react to quality issues and partner with the customer, and evidence of the supplier’s continuous improvement programs for quality, manufacturing and packaging.