An increasingly popular field of research and development, virtual R&D, has the potential to reduce the R&D process by two-thirds, cut clinical trial costs and improve success rates (PharmaIQ 02-Feb-2012).

The global pharmaceutical packaging market was valued at $47.8 billion in 2010. The market is forecast to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7.3% from 2010–2017, to reach a value of $78 billion by 2017 (PharmaIQ 07-Feb-2012).

Some estimate the annual market for cold chain deliveries at or below 0ºC at more than four million shipments globally. This equates to a cold chain shipping growth spurt of 19 per cent for the US and EU, 50 per cent for Asia and 33 per cent for the rest of the world (Samedan Ltd. Feb 2012).

Dr Jim J Zhang, president and managing director of JZMed, told that recent reports stated around 80 percent of drugs were being shipped in the country without appropriate temperature control and record. “But, presently, the effective cold chain management in China is still a brand new concept to many companies, especially those professional logistics service providers” (PharmaIQ 30-Nov-11).

The global pharmaceutical packaging market is dominated by the US, with a market share of 37% in 2010. This was followed by Western Europe and Asia Pacific, with market shares of 33% and 30%, respectively, in 2010. However, this trend is likely to change in the future as Asia Pacific is poised to grow faster than Europe and the US. Over the next five years, the Asia Pacific market is expected to grow by more than 10%, while Western European and the US markets will grow at 6% and 4%, respectively (PharmaIQ 07-Feb-2012).

Few guidelines exist for packaging and protecting controlled room temperature (CRT) products. The Parenteral Drug Assn (PDA) defines CRT as 20° to 25° C. However, many manufacturers have not adopted this definition (Healthcare Packaging 06-Feb-2012).

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