3 Predicted Trends for the Pharma Market in 2021

Posted in: About Valley Northern 28th December 2020 3 Predicted Trends for the Pharma Market in 2021

The pharmaceutical industry has seen tremendous growth in recent years and by 2021 is expected to exceed $1 trillion. So what’s set to bolster the pharma industry in the wake of an eventful 2020?

Anti-counterfeiting measures

A rise in counterfeit products within the pharmaceutical & healthcare industry has caused increasing concerns from leading manufacturers across the globe, concerned with the dilution of brand identity. This is expected to drive growth over the next few years, as well as rising technological innovation for the production of highly secure packaging within pharmaceutical industries.

Applying drug information directly onto pills, or using nano barcodes for authentication and track-and-trace are measures intended to enable the pharma industry to challenge harmful counterfeiting practices.

Additionally, batch numbers concealed on packaging will also be tied with a destination to prevent the distribution of the drugs outside of an intended market.

Smart packaging

Smart packaging can improve stock control and help to easily adjust production and supply. Radio-frequency identification (RFID), Near-Field-Communication (NFC), Bluetooth, and QR enabled packaging is at the forefront of technology solutions in pharmaceutical packaging.

Biosensors and technological temperature sensors will allow a drug’s temperature to be tracked during the shipping process and throughout storage. These sensors can also be used to measure whether drugs release any chemicals or bacteria to prevent the use of unsafe, spoiled, or expired drugs.

Smart packaging is also a great means of improving medication adherence in this strange new world of social distancing, as it is possible to monitor and record patient dosing without the need for patient interaction.


Eco-friendly materials

Plastics are historically the most used material in pharmaceutical packaging. However, to comply with Paris Agreement, carbon reduction objectives set for the pharma sector propose to reduce emissions by 59% by 2025. One of the solutions to emissions reduction is recyclable packaging. 

The first recyclable strip packaging for pharmaceutical solids, made from polyolefin laminate, has been presented recently as a solution to this challenge; as more than 70% of the final product can be recycled. A CO2-neutral solution for pharmaceutical packaging has also been developed that biodegrades in 10 years. This plastic alternative, known as ‘green plastic’ is made by combining sugarcane with a biodegradable plastic additive.


We’ve never seen a year quite like 2020 and, hopefully, will not see another within our lifetime. If we can be of assistance in any way, please call us on 01785 250123 or email sales@valleynorthern.com.

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