The new bottle packing line at the site in Etten-Leur, the Netherlands, was announced earlier this year and is now complete. The expansion triples capacity and the firm is now able to process 13,000 tablets per minute across its bottling lines.
“The [undisclosed] investment into our bottle-packing capabilities was in direct response to customer demand and we have an ongoing investment plan in place to help us improve our offering further, beyond increasing our capacity,” Dexter Tjoa, director of corporate strategy at Tjoapack, told this publication.
“As part of our strategic growth plan we’ll be overhauling our entire software platform. We’ll be implementing new enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems, warehouse management systems (WMS), and manufacturing execution systems (MES) systems, as well as upgrading back office applications to increase digital productivity by introducing new communications and collaboration tools.”
While jobs at the site have been continuously added over the last 12 months, Tjoa said the firm was not specifically hiring more people as a result of the investment in the new line.
According to Tjoa, Pharma’s growing demand for outsourced packaging is down to three reasons:
“Firstly, increased legislative complexity, such as the introduction of serialisation across multiple markets, means that pharmaceutical companies are outsourcing to access external expertise they do not have in-house,” he told us.
“Secondly, an ageing population means there is more demand for medicines. As a result, many manufacturers are reaching capacity on their packaging lines and so are turning to contract packagers to provide additional support.
“Finally, downward cost pressures from governments to reduce to price of medicines is leading many pharmaceutical companies to outsource as opposed to investing internally in new technologies.”
And moving forwards, Tjoapack intends to continue expanding and investing in its service offerings to keep up with the demand.
“We’ll continue to invest in developing suitable processes to allow us to offer postponement services to our customers, as well as continue to explore the use of innovative technologies, such as blockchain, to bring further developments to supply chain security, track & trace and collaboration,” said Tjoa.