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Alchem ups sennoside production in face of pharma demand

By Natalie Morrison & Gareth Macdonald , 25-Sep-2012

Senna leaves and pods
Senna leaves and pods

Alchem International has expanded its sennosides production facility in India in a bid to meet pharma demand.

The firm – which makes the natural laxative product using its own cultivated senna leaves and pods – will up its production to more than 75 tons per year.

Speaking to in-PharmaTechnologist.com, a spokespman at the facility in Neemrana, India, said the move was a result of high demand for sennosides from drugmakers in the US and Europe.

The company said its high good manufacturing practice (GMP) compliance and regular customer audits have driven demand for its production in particular, which creates 60 per cent purity USP (United States Pharmacopoeia) grade sennosides.

“Over the years, as regulatory focus on sennosides has increased globally, a need for high quality, regulatory compliant, drug master file (DMF) supported sennosides has emerged from the United States and Europe.  In addition the aging population in these countries has also led to an increase in the volume requirements,” the spokesman told us.

The expansion

As part of the expansion, the firm has made the switch from batch to continuous production, and has installed computer controlled manufacturing equipment.

“For this reason many instrumentation engineers, statistical analysts have been included in our team of engineers, chemists and quality staff,” the spokesman added. 

The firm also recently opened a new US liasons office, and has established a local stock of the product, in a bid to help the supply chain and grow business with US customers.

In a statement, president of Alchem Raman Mehta said: "With our long-time North American distributor, Ampak in New York, and our recently opened US liaison office, we're able to better serve our North American customers by offering local inventory of sennosides and technical support.”

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