• Aptar Pharma and Noble Partner with dne pharma, a European Leader in Addiction Medicine, on Ventizolve® Nasal Naloxone Treatment

    Aptar Pharma and Noble Partner with dne pharma, a European Leader in Addiction Medicine, on Ventizolve® Nasal Naloxone Treatment


    Using Aptar Pharma’s patented Unidose Liquid System, Ventizolve® is a ready-to-use rescue treatment that can quickly reverse the life-threatening effects of an opioid overdose. Noble’s Unidose trainer kit, which replicates Aptar’s Unidose device, will be used by dne pharma as part of a broad patient onboarding and awareness program for Ventizolve® in outreach and drug treatment centers across the Nordics – the first trainer kit of its kind used for a naloxone nasal drug product launch.

    Increasing patient access to address the opioid epidemic 

    According to The World Health Organization (WHO), opioids and opioid overdose account for more than 70% of the half a million drug-use related deaths that are reported annually worldwide[1]. In their Opioid Task Force 2020 Progress Report[2], the American Medical Association (AMA) states that a “continuing increase in drug overdoses is fueling the evolution of a more dangerous and complicated epidemic”, and urges stakeholders to come together to work collaboratively on meaningful action to remove barriers and increase patient access to evidence-based care, both to save lives and help end the epidemic.

    Dne pharma’s focus is on improving existing treatments within addiction therapy. Nina Måsvær, Marketing Manager at dne pharma explains, “With the growing opioid overdose epidemic, we were fortunate to collaborate with Professor Ola Dale at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Trondheim on the development of a nasal naloxone sprayer for pre-hospital and take-home use and were able to secure final use approval for Ventizolve® in 12 European countries in 2018.”

    Nasally Administered Opioid Overdose Rescue Treatment

    Aptar Pharma’s Unidose Liquid System is the drug delivery device used to administer Ventizolve® and is a ready-to-use, one-step nasal device designed to enable the delivery of a precise, single dose quickly, easily and reliably, and without the need for administration by a trained professional.

    “With over 100 million devices sold worldwide, our patented Unidose Technology Platforms are approved by the U.S. FDA and European regulatory authorities for a wide range of treatments from chronic conditions such as migraine and vitamin B12 deficiency to life-saving drugs that counter an opioid overdose,” commented Isabelle Menard, Director of Strategy and Business Integration at Aptar Pharma.

    Noble is providing the training and onboarding component with its Unidose training device that replicates the form and function of Aptar Pharma’s Unidose drug delivery device. The Unidose training device features a novel twist reset function, making it easier for users and caregivers to practice administering a dose quickly and effectively so that they are ready when confronted with an emergency situation.

    “Noble’s Unidose trainer kits are an essential part of our commercial launch and will be distributed to health centers across the Nordics as part of our onboarding program,” said Nina Måsvær, dne pharma.

    “We’re honored to provide the training support for this important initiative to combat the growing opioid overdose epidemic,” added Joe Masci, Noble’s Executive Director of Business Development. “The levels of anxiety that come with using a drug delivery device can be high under normal circumstances, let alone under stress and using a product you are not familiar with. When faced with an emergency situation, users need to have the confidence to come to someone’s aid.”

    Drug Repurposing to Nasal Drug Delivery

    Dne pharma is among a new generation of industry disruptors who are making their mark by repurposing existing therapies for nasal drug delivery, with benefits such as better patient convenience, greater personal empowerment, improved user compliance, and in some cases, overcoming objections to more invasive delivery routes. More importantly, in the case of a rescue treatment, the recipient does not need a healthcare professional (HCP) to administer the drug, which could be life-critical in an emergency situation where, for example, the patient is unconscious.


  • Danone launches UK’s 1st formula milk in an innovative, pre-measured tab format

    Danone launches UK’s 1st formula milk in an innovative, pre-measured tab format

    • New format developed to make preparing formula milk simpler & more convenient
    • Pre-measured tab format produced in partnership with Japanese food manufacturer, Meiji  
    • Following UK launch, Danone plans to introduce new format in Europe as of next year

    In commenting on the launch, Gustavo Hildenbrand, General Manager UK & Ireland, Danone Specialized Nutrition, explained, “Breastmilk is the gold standard when it comes to feeding babies. But if parents feel they need to move on from breastmilk, they tell usthey’re looking for ways to make a formula milk feed simpler and more convenient.” According to research1 conducted in 2018 with more than 1,300 UK mums, ‘convenient for feeding-on-the-go’ was the 2nd most important criteria mums cited. Close to a third of those surveyed (31%) also said they looked for ‘greater convenience when preparing a formula feed’. The new formula milk tabs dissolve easily, with one tab equal to one standard scoop of powdered formula. The new pre-measured tab format will be made available in packs of 24 sachets, with each sachet containing five tabs. Danone expects the new format to help cut down on mess when preparing a formula feed, making the new format useful – in particular for night-time feeds. Besides allowing for more accurate measurement and less wasted formula, the new format helps provide extra reassurance – in particular for parents who favour formats that emphasize hygiene. The new format will be available exclusively via the UK’s leading health & beauty retailer, Boots, under the Aptamil* brand. Launching this format innovation in the UK shows how Danone is adapting research and innovations to meet the genuine needs of parents. “We hope bringing to market formula milk in a pre-measured tab format will offer added convenience and support for formula feeding parents – especially in the ‘new normal’, when parents are often stretched and trying to juggle balancing family and work-life from home,” Mr. Hildenbrand added.

  • ecoVeritas launches online Plastic Packaging Tax calculator to support packaging industry

    ecoVeritas launches online Plastic Packaging Tax calculator to support packaging industry


    The ecoVeritas Plastic Packaging Tax calculator enables users to input information relating to the amount of plastic packaging they manufacture, import and export, before generating an estimate of direct costs based on the current draft of the plastic tax legislation. It also allows users to calculate potential annual tax savings that could be achieved by increasing the amount of recycled content used in the manufacture of plastic packaging.

    David Harding-Brown, CEO of ecoVeritas, said: “It’s a little over 12 months until the UK Plastic Packaging Tax comes into force and companies need to start thinking now about how they can reduce their liability to avoid costly implications nearer the time.

    “Our new tax calculator provides companies across the packaging industry with a free-of-charge estimate that will help them plan for the future and act as a starting point for taking action to reduce future tax obligations.

    “At ecoVeritas, our core expertise lies in global data collection and analysis, meaning our experts can offer packaging intelligence and advise on compliance and legislation. We are keen to play our part in readying the packaging industry and its supply chains to make the introduction of the tax as smooth and cost-efficient for businesses.

    “With such a significant – and potentially costly – change on the horizon, we want to ensure companies are as prepared as they can be. As a result, we invite those affected to try our new calculator and engage with our dedicated team. ecoVeritas can provide further advice and guidance in the form of a more detailed cost analysis or support around improving recyclate usage.”

    The implementation of the UK Plastic Packaging Tax is part of a new law to reduce the environmental impact of packaging and cut manufacturers’ reliance on virgin plastic. The tax will apply at a rate of £200 per tonne of plastic packaging which does not contain at least 30% recycled plastic from April 2022. This will apply to plastic packaging which has been manufactured in, or imported into, the UK.

    In terms of liability, businesses that manufacture in the UK or import packaging into the UK will be subject to the tax. The responsibility also falls onto those across the plastic packaging supply chain too, including online marketplaces, fulfilment houses and businesses importing finished packaging into the UK from overseas, where they share joint liability if the tax has not yet been paid.

  • Boots ramps-up ecommerce packaging performance with Quadient

    Boots ramps-up ecommerce packaging performance with Quadient


    The UK’s largest pharmacy-led health and beauty retailer, Boots.com is a fast-expanding part of the business, supported by a sizeable ecommerce fulfilment centre in Burton.

    Until a year ago a simple mechanise packaging system was in use for the majority of off-peak orders, but the system did not offer the flexibility or capacity needed for Black Friday and peak season.

    Boots chose to invest in automated packing machines from Quadient that tailor-make parcels at high-speed.

    Quadient’s CVP Impack has the potential to construct bespoke individual cardboard boxes to the exact size of an ordered item at the rate of up to of 500 boxes per hour – combining multiple items, as required.

    The CVP Impack measures, constructs, tapes, weighs and labels each parcel in one seamless process.

    The operator places the item(s) to be packed onto the machine and scans the order.

    The system identifies the order and automatically conveys the items to a 3D scanner to measure and calculate the minimum box size required.

    The cardboard is then cut and folded to create a snug fit around the goods and tape is applied on just two sides to secure the box.

    Then an in-line scale checks the weight against the order and, finally, the box is automatically conveyed to a label printer where a carrier compliant label is created and applied.

    The whole process, from start to finish, takes only 30 seconds with a custom made box configured every seven seconds.

    “We were impressed by the speed and efficiency with which the two Quadient machines performed over the Black Friday peak,” says Murfin. “The CVP Impack machines have delivered significant cost and environmental benefits too, with reduced material use and volume savings on transport.”

  • Greiner Packaging develops refill solution

    Greiner Packaging develops refill solution


    The 200ml refill bottle is made of HDPE, PP, or PET. Due to their shape, the refill bottles make it easy for consumers to squeeze out their contents in consistent doses – plus, they can be provided with an attractive label. In addition, the non-removable, hinged snap-on lid is fitted with a safety lock. They also have a large surface area that can be designed or decorated attractively.

    Greiner Packaging is committed to advancing a sustainable circular economy that, in addition to recycling, also delivers reductions in plastic material use.

    Consumers can get as much out of a single new refill bottle as they otherwise could from four separate plastic spray bottles, including trigger sprayers – over its lifecycle, original 500ml spray bottles and trigger sprayers can produce 10,000 individual 1ml sprays, ensuring that they can be used to its maximum potential.

    Tõnu Kundla, International Business Development Manager at Greiner Packaging, said: “It goes without saying that we were primarily aiming to reduce material use when we developed the new spray bottle multidose refill. The amount saved increases exponentially throughout the intelligent refill cycle – ultimately yielding a reduction of up to 85 per cent. Each year, this could save up to 1,000 metric tonnes of plastic, if we assume that there are 20 million standard spray bottles a year. In order to be sustainable, reuse of a spray bottle and its refills must become a new normal.”

    Outer packaging is no longer strictly necessary here, which further reduces material use while underscoring sustainability. Furthermore, the option of producing the entire bottle from PCR plastic adds more sustainability.

  • Amgen Invests in AI-Assisted Packaging Inspection

    Amgen Invests in AI-Assisted Packaging Inspection


    Leading biotech drug-maker and marketer Amgen recently achieved an industry first: The first fully validated visual inspection system using artificial intelligence (AI), according to Amgen’s partner for the project,  Syntegon Technology (formerly Bosch Packaging Technology).

    The project involved an AI retrofit to a Syntegon syringe inspection machine installed in 2015 at Amgen’s Juncos, Puerto Rico, production facility. The machine has 13 inspection stations, each performing a specific inspection task on syringes and their contents. The challenge is that it’s difficult to ensure accurate detection of unacceptable products without rejecting too many acceptable products.

    “Most inspection machines are very effective at detecting defects, but they also provide a lot of false rejections that represent a significant cost to operations,” says Manuel Soto, senior principal process development scientist with Amgen’s Core Technology Team. Typically, a sort of balancing act is required in which companies must tolerate high reject counts to guarantee product safety and quality.

    Amgen met this challenge using AI — specifically, deep learning technology — to address a particularly challenging problem at one critical inspection station that challenges companies industry-wide: bubbles.


    How AI beats bubble trouble.

    Specifically, the problem with air bubbles, especially in highly viscous parenteral (injectable) solutions, is that they can’t be easily or quickly eliminated or differentiated from unwanted particles that represent product defects. This is especially challenging when bubbles form around the syringe’s rubber stopper and can’t be sufficiently spun-away or otherwise eliminated. This makes it hard for conventional vision systems to identify the anomaly.

    The results were surprising and remarkable: The particle detection rate for this critical station increased by around 70%, while the false detection rate was reduced by about 60%. 

    What makes the AI so much better? It’s in the software. Traditional inspection uses rule-based techniques “to perform pre-determined operations on specific areas within the target image,” explains Dr. José Zanardi, responsible for vision inspection development and applications at Syntegon. In contrast, the deep learning application uses neural networks to process images in a manner more akin to our human eyes and brain: “It looks into differential patterns and makes decisions on the ‘knowledge’ of pattern changes stored in the trained neural network.”

    To get a traditional vision system to effectively differentiate between the smooth surface of a bubble and the rugged surface of a glass shard “would require an enormous amount of different settings and operations broken down to very small areas in the region of interest,” Zanardi adds.

    Amgen was able to retain its machine’s preexisting optics and camera (specifically, a CMOS line-scan camera), essentially updating only PCs and software. This included a new, more powerful runtime vision PC at the upgraded vision station; and an update to the MVTec Halcon vision/deep-learning software plant engineers were already using, offline, to train the deep-learning model.

    The latest news from the Syntegon side of the partnership, Zanardi says, is a full AI inspection solution “developed completely in-house,” says Zanardi, presently offered for new machines or retrofits.


    Achieving validation for the AI.

    The project uses a supervised implementation of deep learning that gives the administrator full control to change — or prevent changes as governed by change-control procedures. For instance, once a deep-learning model is validated, it’s locked, encrypted, and version controlled. The same goes for the runtime software at the machine level. And as with any pharmaceutical production equipment, the machine must demonstrate its performance during validation. 


    Benefits beyond the machine.

    Maximizing the defect detection rate improves quality and safety for customers, in this case, Amgen’s patients. Reducing the number of false rejects cuts waste, reworks, and overall costs.

    “The end result is that we are more effective detecting defects and we are also more efficient at not rejecting good product. So the benefit is at both ends — the quality side and the efficiency side of our operation — empowering Amgen to deliver quality products to every patient every time,” Soto says.


    Syntegon’s Zanardi adds that the AI solution simplifies “vision recipes” to cut idle time and speed changeovers. In turn, the system reduces reliance on experienced engineers, who he says are traditionally “the only ones who can create and adjust traditional vision recipes.”

  • AIM Sweden looks to revolutionize food packaging production

    AIM Sweden looks to revolutionize food packaging production


    Over the past five years, AIM has used its three GE Additive Arcam EBM Q20plus and Q10plus systems to develop cutting-edge 3D printed perforated molds. These new molds address the unique challenges of turning wet, fibrous pulp into products, such as food containers and packaging material, with improved strength, thinner walls and the ability to contain liquids and fats.

    The collaboration between AIM and GE has allowed AIM to develop a completely new tooling solution as well as an optimized EBM build strategy to produce extremely thin, highly stackable molds with minimal or no support structures. This process significantly reduces production time. In operation the thin titanium forming skins rest on a 3D printed nylon backing, also designed and produced by AIM.

    This work is essential as consumers and governments become increasingly sensitive to food packaging waste. The EU’s Directive on Single-Use plastics, for example, sets ambitious targets on decreasing the use of disposable plastic products in Europe. By mid-2021, European Member States will need to have banned single use plastic products for which there are readily available alternatives. This includes cutlery, plates and expanded polystyrene food containers, beverage containers and cups. By 2026 Member States also have an obligation to show an ambitious and sustained reduction in the consumption of plastic food containers and cups and lids for beverages.

    AIM Sweden’s new shaping tools, additively manufactured using GE Additive’s EBM technology, address these kinds of issues by making food packaging production less labour- and resource-intensive. AIM’s process makes packaging cheaper, more efficient and longer lasting. AIM’s technical director, Axel Bergström, explained that “this all started out with a few customers asking us to make forming tools for molded fiber. The early molds were fully functional, but we were also challenged to improve the functionality by increasing resolution and make even smaller perforation holes more evenly distributed.”

    “To increase the resolution of perforation across a complex 3D surface was a geometric challenge that pushed the limits of current additive printing technology and knowhow. The GE Additive team in Gothenburg provided an advanced training course which was instrumental for the process development work we later carried out. Now, we can utilize our EBM machines more efficiently and build high resolution titanium skins more or less free of support,” said Bergström.

  • CEA-Leti, Intel Expand Collaboration on 3D Packaging

    CEA-Leti, Intel Expand Collaboration on 3D Packaging


    CEA-Leti has announced a new collaboration with Intel on 3D packaging technologies for processors to advance chip design. The research will focus on assembly of smaller chiplets, optimizing interconnection technologies between the different elements of microprocessors, and on new bonding and stacking technologies for 3D ICs, especially for making high performance computing (HPC) applications.

    3D technology, which stacks chips vertically in a device, not only optimizes the power of the chip with advanced packaging interconnects between components, but it also allows the creation of heterogeneous integration of chiplets. That ultimately allows fabrication of more efficient, thinner and lighter microprocessors. In addition, by implementing multiple heterogeneous solutions in a single package, chip companies benefit from considerable flexibility, such as mixing and matching different technology blocks with different IP and integrating memory and input / output technologies within the same component. This enables chip makers to continue to innovate and adapt to the needs of their customers and partners.

    The key to the work being done by CEA-Leti is to develop new 3D bonding and stacking technologies for integration of devices manufactured in different processes. Speaking to EE Times, Severine Cheramy, the 3D business development director at CEA-Leti, explained the collaboration with Intel is focused on advanced technologies to increase the density of interconnects, and hence decrease the pitch. When asked about the expected outcome of the collaboration, she said she was unable to disclose specific details, but that “we together define a scope of work, technical objectives and deliverables.” She said typically the deliverables might include a technical report and/or some wafers.

    Speaking more broadly about the challenges for 3D packaging, she said more advanced research is needed to address issues like production difficulty or simply addressing the cost of implementation. She added, “This collaboration is proof that the electronics world is moving towards advanced packaging and chiplets, and we have some working technology in design flow and test. At a higher level, all the key players working on these advanced packaging technologies need to continue to work together on standardization of interfaces, given that different chiplets from different companies will have different interfaces.”

    In 2019, Intel introduced a 3D-stacking technology, Foveros, that adapted these design features. This advanced-packaging technology, launched in Intel Core processors with Intel hybrid technology (codenamed Lakefield), comes in a small physical package for significantly reduced board size to offer an optimal balance between performance and energy efficiency.  At the IEEE Electronic Components and Technology Conference in June 2020, CEA-Leti received the best paper award for its work, carried out at IRT Nanoelec, on silicon active interposer as a promising solution towards 3D heterogeneous integration.

    Earlier this year, at ISSCC 2020 in February, CEA-Leti presented a paper highlighting its breakthrough in active interposer and 3D stacked chiplets, “A 220GOPS 96-Core Processor with 6 Chiplets 3D-Stacked on an Active Interposer Offering 0.6ns/mm Latency, 3Tb/s/mm2 Inter-Chiplet Interconnects and 156mW/mm2 @ 82%-Peak-Efficiency DC-DC Converters.

  • K1 Packaging Group Introduces the First Landa Digital Printing Press on the West Coast in the United States

    K1 Packaging Group Introduces the First Landa Digital Printing Press on the West Coast in the United States


    K1 Packaging Group, a leading provider of custom packaging solutions for consumer products, is proud to announce expanded production services with the recent installation of a Landa S10 Nanographic Printing® Press. The Landa S10 breaks color, speed, and substrate barriers using the Nanographic Printing® process, Landa's exclusive application of nanotechnology for digital printing. K1's Landa S10 is the first Landa digital press to be installed on the west coast of the U.S.

    The Landa S10's advanced, powerful digital processing platform supports real time quality control and a highly efficient, streamlined workflow that minimizes waste. These components put the Landa S10 in easy compliance with K1's sustainability initiatives and environmental certifications.

    In addition to unprecedented quality and speed - 6,500 sheets per hour, and five times the throughput of any other digital press on the market - K1's customers, comprised of exclusive luxury, health and beauty, pharmaceutical, and electronics brands; will have access to multiple advanced features including limitless version and personalization capabilities, as well as counterfeit prevention and product authenticity verification.

    "As an industry leader in technology and innovation, Landa Digital Printing has made an incredible contribution to the package printing sector with the Nanographic press. Landa's advanced implementation of nanotechnology for printing and powerful digital processing is boosting efficiency significantly," says Mike Tsai, CEO of K1 Packaging Group. "When we were looking to expand our operation, Landa and its S10 was the perfect solution because its scalability and upward compatibility will help us meet customer demand for years to come."

    Edu Meytal, Vice President for Global Business at Landa Digital Printing, says that package printing's soaring worldwide growth comes as the segment undergoes substantial change. To comply with new regulatory actions as well as to satisfy their own customers, brand owners are passing new requirements on to their packaging partners. "This is where true partnerships with customers can make a huge difference," Meytal says. "K1's brand owner customers proactively discuss their long-term plans so that K1 can provide input and be prepared."

    Meytal goes on to say that the packaging printers best positioned to serve the expanded market will satisfy brands' requirements with a variety of offerings, including short runs with variable and personalized options, anti-counterfeiting solutions, finishing options, and sustainability. As such, he says that K1 Packaging Group, equipped with the Landa S10, is a good example of a package printer ready to support this next wave of expansion.

    "K1's technical, artistic, environmental and business acumen is strong. You have to give them credit for doing their homework and executing meaningful initiatives," Meytal says.




    The company has designed an alternative to cardboard boxes and it’s simply called ‘The Box.’ Four years in development, it was again revealed at the CES 2021 with some improvements. The Box is a sustainable option for the e-commerce industry and can allegedly be used to ship up to 1000 times. In contrast, cardboard boxes have a single life from point of packaging to the point of delivery. If the municipality at the location of delivery recycles, the cardboard gets a new lease of life; else it goes waste and injures the environment. In addition to the sustainability aspect, the neatly designed ‘Box’ is equivalent to approximately two shoe boxes and it can be used to ship a large number of commodities. Interestingly, the Box can even fold flat to ship important documents or a laptop. Traditionally sending an important paper by mail/courier is not at all safe – you cannot be sure how it’s being handled on the way – and you have to rely simply on the logistics company’s tracking mechanism to know where your parcel has reached.

    The Box is going to revolutionize this when it is mass-produced toward May this year. The inventive box comes embedded with GPS to allow the sender/receiver to track the package from point A to B and everywhere in between in real-time using a dedicated app on a smart device. Simply place the item inside the Box, close it, enter the destination, and the onboard e-ink display will double as a traditional print label to update its journey status.

    LivingPackets’ Box is currently in beta testing with partner companies, which include e-commerce stores, logistics, and even insurance companies. To ensure the commodity in the package is safe – not just because it is trackable – also safe in transit, the Box features temperature and shock sensors. There is also a provision to include a camera inside in the future, which would allow people to keep an eye on the product they’re shipping within the Box packaging.

    Since this packaging solution seems too good to be true, most of us would instantly count it out for being expensive and for the elite only. However, the environmentally friendly and innovative Box is pretty affordable, in fact, the company wants to keep the costs as low as traditional cardboard packaging. At the end of the life cycle, the Box will be repaired and refurbished to “be used additional 1000 times” LivingPackets claims. Proposing to eliminate up to 90-percent of carbon dioxide emissions, the Box has a holding mechanism within, which means not just the cardboard is replaced, the air-filled bubbled plastic, Styrofoam, etc. used to secure products inside the packaging box are also eliminated. 


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