Especially for medicinal products and other pharmaceuticals, both manufacturers and end customers have to be able to rely one hundred percent on the quality and integrity of the products. Secondary packaging is therefore just as important as primary packaging for product protection during transport, storage and ultimately handling. This is why Schubert-Pharma has specialised in top-loading applications in pharmaceutical end-of-line packaging for over 20 years and has steadily evolved into a major partner of the international pharmaceutical industry.
Manufacturers such as Lundbeck, CSL Behring and LTS Lohmann Therapy Systems rely on the expertise of the packaging machine manufacturer and benefit from customised, safe and reliable packaging solutions. As a unit of Schubert Packaging Systems GmbH, Schubert-Pharma has been under the management of Managing Director Johannes Schubert, the grandson of company founder Gerhard Schubert, since July 2021. Karin Kleinbach has also joined the team as Sales Manager.
Top loading for secondary packaging, seamlessly in a single line
Whether vials, pens, ampoules, patches, infusion bags, syringes, devices or combination products – packaging in the top-loading process is ideally suited for a wide range of pharmaceutical products. Karin Kleinbach explains: “The more complex the packaging process is in secondary packaging, for example with products that consist of several components or with combination packs, the more efficient and cost-effective top-loading is.” Schubert-Pharma not only offers innovative packaging systems, it also accompanies each project individually under the umbrella of Schubert Packaging Systems with an extensive range of engineering services. These extend from machine and line design, through general project management and consulting services, to optimisation of the supply chain and performance of existing packaging lines.
On request, Schubert-Pharma can also act as a general contractor and provide complete manufacturer-independent turnkey solutions. “We develop customer-specific solutions that bring out the very best in terms of safety, reliability, efficiency and cost-effectiveness. Depending on the requirements, we also use machines or units from other manufacturers, which we integrate seamlessly into a line,” says Karin Kleinbach. This enables a wide variety of processes and functions to be implemented within a single line. In addition to the erection of boxes and inner compartments and the careful loading and sealing of secondary packaging, this often includes, for example, all processes for labelling, quality control or serialisation.
Robot-assisted, flexible packaging machines
Schubert’s digital packaging machines are robot-assisted. This ensures controlled, efficient packaging processes from A to Z. The use of proven hardware and software modules from Schubert’s own portfolio guarantees a high level of product safety. The interface-free solutions for track & trace and serialisation also comply with all existing global regulations for pharmaceutical packaging regarding counterfeit prevention and product traceability.
At the same time, the Schubert lines offer pharmaceutical manufacturers a high degree of flexibility thanks to their modular machine concept. “A format changeover usually only takes about half an hour,” reports Karin Kleinbach. The exchange of the robot tools via plug & play, saves the time-consuming start-up after a format change and results in the best packaging being produced immediately upon start-up. For the fast production of new format parts, customers can produce 3D-printed parts themselves: Schubert’s complete PARTBOX system consisting of a streaming platform, 3D printer and filament material, delivers a reliable high quality printing process.
Expertise in packaging development and optimisation
In the pharmaceutical industry, achieving a flawless packaging result also requires that the packaging and the line are perfectly coordinated with each other. Only then can processes run efficiently and at high performance. The earlier Schubert-Pharma is involved in a customer project, the more the pharmaceutical companies benefit from the packaging experts’ know-how. This enables processes and the packaging design to be defined together with the customer right at the beginning of the collaboration and adapted or optimised as required. Indeed, the choice of packaging material, the dimensions, the cut and the machine operability play a significant role in determining the processes in a fully automated system. With comprehensive expertise in this area, Schubert-Pharma can not only make recommendations on the selection of materials and the design of the packaging, but can also develop customised cardboard packaging as an alternative. With well thought-out solutions, it is also possible to reduce the time and effort involved in changing formats or to switch to more environmentally friendly packaging. “Our overarching expertise in the areas of packaging, systems engineering and consulting promises our customers future-proof, high-performance solutions from a single source that more than pay for themselves in the long term,” says Karin Kleinbach.