Sustainability

Design Guidelines Released to Promote Recycling

The Healthcare Plastics Recycling Council (HPRC) has released guidelines intended to help product and packaging designers improve the recyclability of disposable plastic products. “Design Guidelines for Optimal Hospital Plastics Recycling” was produced by HPRC’s technical working group, which comprises technical experts from HPRC members BD, Cardinal Health, DuPont, Engineered Plastics, Hospira, Johnson & Johnson, Kimberly Clark, and Waste Management. (Three new members that joined this past fall--Baxter, Eastman, and Philips--participated in reviews.)

Procter & Gamble Releases 2011 Sustainability Report

The Procter & Gamble Co. has released its 2011 Sustainability Report titled "Commitment to Everyday Life." The report outlines P&G's global progress over the last year in decreasing the environmental footprint of products and operations, fulfilling social responsibility commitments and delivering sustainable product innovations to the market. The report is now available online here.

Standardizing Approaches toward Sustainability

The Consumer Goods Forum has released its Global Protocol on Packaging Sustainability (GPPS) 2.0, and pharmaceutical and medical device packaging professionals would be well served to take a look. Most challenging in developing a sustainability program is figuring out what and how to measure, and with the forum representing more than 650 companies, this protocol offers quite a consensus.

Keep Your Eye on Optimization

As you set out to reduce material use as part of a sustainability initiative, make sure you keep product protection high on your list.

ISTA (the International Safe Transit Association) is getting close to finalizing its “Responsible Packaging by Design” protocol, which gives packaging professionals a “flow-chart” approach to examining existing packaging and potentially more-sustainable alternatives. ISTA chairman Joan Pierce, who is also vice president, packaging sustainability, for Colgate Palmolive, explains that the draft protocol is going through final reviews and edits. The association aims to begin protocol training programs later this fall.

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Medical Devices under REACH and RoHS

By Dr. Steffen Erler, Smithers Viscient, and Dr. Andrew Feilden, Smithers Rapra

Product-based chemical regulation in the European Union continues to change at a rapid rate. As this article will explain, companies and consultants need to make sure that they are not caught off-guard by what can appear to be seemingly unrelated regulation, as exemplified by “REACH” and “RoHS.” Interactions between these regulations can have a potentially large impact on medical devices. 

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Standardizing Sustainability

Industry progresses on setting sustainability standards.

By Pat Nolan, President, DDL

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Encouraging Plastics Recycling in Hospitals and Beyond

The Healthcare Plastics Recycling Council (HPRC) develops design guidelines for engineers that could drive recycling throughout the supply chain.

Design for Recycling” guidelines by the Healthcare Plastics Recycling Council (HPRC) are currently being reviewed by founding members DuPont, Becton, Dickinson and Company, Cardinal Health, Engineered Plastics, Hospira, Johnson & Johnson, Kimberly Clark, and Waste Management. Aiming to identify and overcome the disablers to recycling in the healthcare supply chain, the coalition decided that guidelines could encourage developers to build recyclability into both package and product design.

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To Do More with Less, Develop a Portfolio Management Process

Cost-cutting is a frequent task of today's packaging engineer. Pharmaceutical and medical device manufacturers are looking to reduce costs wherever they can, so engineers must balance new packaging development with savings-minded product life cycle management.

But how can packaging engineers possibly juggle this increasing workload? Companies must develop a portfolio management process for prioritizing all projects, advises Stephen Birtsas, a manager with global innovation management consultancy Kalypso.

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Containing the Costs of Reuse

A company offering reusable shippers works to reduce component replacement costs.

Interest in reusable shipping solutions continues to grow in the pharmaceutical and biotech industries, but companies do grapple with cost of ownership, reports Kevin Lawler, vice president, sales, Minnesota Thermal Science (MTS; Plymouth, MN). The company, which has been serving these markets with its Credo Cube thermal packaging systems, has been working to reduce maintenance costs and is set to release its latest solution at IQPC’s 9th Cold Chain & Temperature Management Global Forum this September.

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AMERIPEN Announces 2011-2012 Priorities

The board of directors of AMERIPEN, the American Institute for Packaging and the Environment, has announced its organizational priorities for 2011-2012. Modeled after EUROPEN and INCPEN, AMERIPEN was started by several U.S. corporations earlier this year to encourage science-based decision-making in sustainable packaging initiatives. The institute focuses on measures that are environmentally and economically sound as well as socially responsible, it reported in a press release.

The priorities include the following:

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