Pharmapack Europe – organised by UBM EMEA – closed its 2017 edition, celebrating its 20 years as the leading European event for pharmaceutical packaging and drug delivery devices. The top trends that emerged from the two-day event included: patient centricity, traceability, innovation, compliance and adherence.
The milestone edition saw an increase in attendance numbers from 2016, with 5,290 attendees and 411 exhibitors. It was the most international Pharmapack Europe to date, participants from over 100 countries attending to network, innovate and learn in Paris.
The conference programme included three sessions focused on ‘Innovation and Compliance’, ‘Patient Adherence: New challenges, New Opportunities’, and ‘Impact on Patient Centricity and Biologics on Packaging and Device Development’. A special emphasis was placed on the emerging importance of the ‘human factor’ – which is defined as patient centricity, adherence and/or compliance – particularly with the current trend of self-administered drugs.
Pharmapack’s Serialisation and Track & Trace symposium outlined the industry’s efforts to overcome pharmaceutical counterfeiting, putting traceability solutions and serialisation strategies at the forefront of the agenda. With the impending deadline looking over manufacturers, a special session provided guidance on the EU Falsified Medicine’s Directive. Additionally, the symposium featured case studies and practical examples of traceability application and compliance for attendees.
Outside of the conference agenda, this year’s Pharmapack Europe also included a first ever media debate (1st February), with industry experts* predicting future innovations to mark 20 years of the event. In line with the trends experienced during the event, the debate was centred on compliance, patient centricity and digital integration. According to Dr Gauthier, ‘technology is becoming more integrated with packaging, particularly as solutions move towards greater patient centricity, in terms of screen integration, signal transmission and data sharing’. Equally, Prof. Arnaud suggested that we must look at the future of pharma packaging to advance the industry. Individualisation is at the forefront of innovation, particularly with regard to small populations and the elderly.
With device development being fast-tracked by many authorities, Mr Jeannin commented that the interaction between medication and devices is growing across the globe, with the United States FDA a clear leader in regulation on combination products, while Europe is also experiencing development in this area.
In the last 20 years, the experts agreed, several products have had anti-counterfeiting and traceability issues in an increasingly complex supply chain. Mr Bobee stated that packaging is the key element in the security for patients and products, with tamper evidence now expected to be an essential requirement in the future.
Finally, Pharmapack Europe 2017 also saw the return of the Innovation Gallery and Innovation Tours, presenting the most innovative products in the pharma packaging and delivery device industry through dedicated guided tours. Another Pharmapack first, was the introduction of the new Pharmapack Start-up Hub – the newest addition to the show floor, which highlighted groundbreaking young pharma companies as the most innovative in the exhibition. The next edition of Pharmapack will take place on 7th- 8th February 2018, at the Paris Expo Porte de Versailles, hall 7.1.
Anne Schumacher, Brand Director at Pharmapack Europe, commented: “This year’s event was an amazing celebration of our industry, 20 years is a reason to proudly celebrate what we have achieved in this time. Innovation has been the driving force of both Pharmapack and the industry in the past two decades, moving the industry closer to patients, and increasing compliance and traceability. During the conference, we got a view on how the industry is synergising with the patient and looking to individualise packaging. With over 5,290 attendees, Pharmapack is a community hub of pharma leaders, and many of the deals completed this week are the starting points for the developments of tomorrow.”