Clariant Focusing on Protecting Bulk Pharmaceuticals at Pharmapack 2019


  • Controlled atmosphere solutions on display in Stand D20
  • Prevent degradation by moisture, oxygen exposure
  • Produced at ISO 15378 certified sites in USA, France, China

Muttenz, February 7, 2019 – Clariant, a world leader in specialty chemicals, and its Healthcare Packaging business line, are exhibiting at Pharmapack 2019 and featuring products that protect the quality and appearance of bulk pharmaceuticals (powders, tablets, capsules, etc.), as well as active ingredients (API) during processing and shipment. The show takes place in Paris 6 & 7 February 2019 and Clariant is exhibiting on Stand D20.

Clariant experts will be on hand to introduce visitors to three distinct solutions that protect against damage caused by high and low humidity levels, and oxidation. All three are produced in new ISO 15378 GMP certified facilities in Belen, New Mexico, USA, Romorantin, France, and Donguan, China.

“It is common practice to include desiccants and other controlled atmosphere products in end-market packaging,” explains Dr. Elisa Le Floch, Business Development & Marketing Manager, Clariant Healthcare Packaging, “but it is just as important to control moisture and oxygen in bulk packaging, to extend shelf-life and prevent degradation and future processing or assembly problems.”

The simplest solutions use desiccant. Sorb-It® PHARMA bags, are filled with silica-gel desiccant, while Tri-Sorb® PHARMA bags employ a molecular sieve. Placed inside packages of bulk or finished drugs or work-in-process APIs, these bags adsorb any moisture in the product, or the air surrounding it, to provide a low-humidity environment. Without such protection, moisture can cause a loss of drug potency, caking and clumping that affects material flow, among other problems. The desiccant bags comply with U.S. Pharmaceopeia USP<670> testing requirements for Auxiliary Packaging Components. They are available in a range of standard and custom sizes to suit specific application requirements.

For certain pharmaceutical products, a simple desiccant may not provide the protection required. For these applications, moisture must be controlled to certain specific levels. Powders, for instance, can cake or clump when exposed to too much moisture, while too little can cause undesirable static electricity. Oral forms, such as tablets or gelatin capsules, need a certain amout of moisture to maintain plasticity and prevent brittleness. Even plastic parts used in medical devices, when stored in bulk packaging, can pick up electrostatic charges if the environment is too dry.

For these types of bulk applications, Clariant recommends EQius™ bags. EQius products are made using specially engineered sorbents that can act as humectants (desorbers) and desiccants (adsorbers) simultaneously, maintaining a particular equilibrium relative humidity (ERH) inside product packaging. This line of standard equilibrium-stabilizer products can maintain specific ERH levels between 10 and 60% to help bulk ingredients in boxes or bags maintain their physical integrity.

“In other bulk applications, pharmaceuticals need to be protected not only against moisture but also against the harmful effects of oxidation. Oxygen can cause several kinds of degradation, a change in color or smell, a change in pH or other molecular properties, or physical changes. In these cases, PharmaKeep® Oxygen Absorbing Desiccant Bags (branded & produced by Mitsubishi Gas Chemical Company and distributed by Clariant Healthcare Packaging) is the recommended solution. PharmaKeep can adsorb both oxygen and moisture to prevent both oxidation and hydrolysis. This makes it an ideal alternative to conventional oxygen absorbers, which may actually require moisture for effective oxygen absorption, or complex and expensive processes such as nitrogen protection, vacuum or negative-temperature regulation. In addition, PharmaKeep oxygen absorber bags may be a good solution for large pharmacies that handle bulk quantities of tablets and use automatic dispensing machine,” Stephane Rault, Product Manager at Clariant, explains.

Clariant Healthcare Packaging offers full line of controlled-atmosphere packaging solutions including pharmaceutical desiccants, equilibrium sorbents, adsorbent polymers, oxygen scavengers and pharmaceutical closures and containers. Using both active and passive packaging technologies, Clariant offers an array of standard components and complete systems, as well as full innovation and development capabilities. By understanding customer needs and expectations, Clariant is able to offer comprehensive and viable solutions that increase efficiency, reduce costs and improve the environmental compatibility of products.

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Stefanie Nehlsen
Stefanie Nehlsen
Global Trade Media Relations
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