Sustainable Packaging Design for Medtech and Pharma

In a recent article on the Design Partners website, the author, Peter Murphy outlines 9 criteria for designing sustainable packaging for the Medtech and Pharma sector.

Who are Design Partners?

Design Partners are a product design and Innovation agency based in County Wicklow, Ireland.
The author of the article, Peter Murphy, is an industrial designer with a Master’s degree specialising in Healthcare.

The author begins by saying that there has been a real shift towards more sustainable packaging in the medtech and pharma industry. However, he states that many packaging buyers are unsure of how to address the challenge to be more sustainable and how to deal with the important regulatory considerations that have to be factored into the design of the packaging for medical devices and pharmaceutical products.

He created a 9-point sustainability criteria list that will assist medical device and pharma companies in creating more sustainable packaging designs.

Below is a summary of the 9 criteria.

1. Create a storyboard of the packaging lifespan, right through to when it is being used and disposed of in the patient’s home
2. Reduce superfluous packaging – this will not only reduce their weight, size and cost will also reduce the complexity of the packaging.
3. Where possible, combine elements of the packaging. For example, examine if it would be possible to incorporate user instructions directly into the design or on the lid of the packaging instead having a separate instruction booklet?
4. Leverage digital as much as possible. For example, replace printed IFU (instructions for use) leaflet/booklet with a QR code or augmented reality so that users can access the same information on their smartphones
5. Design for disposal. Make it easy to recycle or dispose of by, for example, using all the same materials or by making it easy to dismantle.
6. Reduce dependency on non-sustainable materials and use recycled or sustainable alternative materials where possible.  For example, if using a window carton choose a plant-based film instead of PVC plastic for the clear window. At Dollard Packaging, we offer a sustainable, plant-based window film for cartons.
7. Give priority to low impact materials in cases where the waste requires incineration
8. Always seek to innovate and try using the most sustainable option where possible, such as water-based inks and adhesives or choose cellulose over PVC.
9. Feed into the culture of continuous improvement by promoting sustainability in the packaging design, such as promoting sustainable messages in the text on the packaging or in the material choice etc

You can read the full article here. Sustainable Packaging for Medtech & Pharma – Design Partners

If you need help creating a more sustainable packaging for your medical devices, contact us today. or 01 847 0044

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