Products in the range, which was launched by part of Rio Tinto's Alcan packaging unit, are designed to offer improved oxygen and moisture exclusion solutions to drug producers wishing to optimize the shelf life of their products.
According to a recent report by the USA's BBC Research, the pharmaceutical market for high-barrier plastic packaging will see considerable growth over the next five years. The study argued that the continuing emergence of complex drugs and biologics that are particularly moisture- or oxygen-sensitive will drive the expanision.
Another study, conducted by the Freedonia Group late last year, predicted that the size of the pharmaceutical packaging market will increase 5.9 per cent per year over the next five years, reaching a value of more than $34 billion by 2011.
Freedonia forecast that China will provide the strongest growth opportunities, while India and Brazil "will evolve into fast-growing pharmaceutical packaging markets as drug-producing sectors are upgraded and diversified." Demand for high-barrier packaging in such regions is also increase due to both the need for improved shelf life and local climatic conditions.
The StabilitySolutions Dry is a plastic bi-layer container that has been designed to extend the shelf life of oral solid dose products by offering improved water exclusion. It incorporates a sophisticated desiccant material into the layer that directly contacts the product, removing the requirement for further water exclusion measures.
The other product in the range, StabilitySolutions Barrier, features a patent tri-layer structure that is composed of two outer layers of high density polyethylene and an inner core of ethylene vinyl alcohol the highly oxygen impermeable material ethylene vinyl alcohol. It is designed for oral solid drugs that are particularly susceptible to degradation by oxygen.
Alcan's chief growth and innovation officer, Michael Rubenstein, said that products in the range use "patent pending technologies to ensure that customers' products maintain their efficacy longer, delivering the greatest possible benefit to patients."
These thoughts were echoed by Mike Schmitt, president, Alcan Global Pharmaceutical Packaging who said that "the StabilitySolutions product line demonstrates our belief that packaging can add exceptional value to our customers' products."
Schmitt went on to say that the company's "innovation efforts are uniquely focused on our customers' specialized needs, working collaboratively with them to optimize product integrity while delivering a high level of customization for their individual product requirements."