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Smedpack research collaboration is prioritised in Horizon 2020 project

Photo: Innventia
Photo: Innventia
Published by
Simon Matthis - 11 Sep 2015

The Smedpack research collaboration, which is being led and coordinated by Innventia, has been selected as a good example within the Horizon 2020 project RRI Tools' toolbox for Responsible Research and Innovation. The aim of the RRI concept is to create inclusive, sustainable research and innovation that also corresponds with society's values.

The Smedpack research collaboration is developing security solutions which prevent counterfeit pharmaceuticals from entering the legal distribution chain, and which comply with the EU directive. Counterfeit pharmaceuticals are a particularly popular product on the black market. The new packaging concept will make it easier for consumers to distinguish between genuine products and fake ones. The collaboration, which is being led and coordinated by Innventia, involves around 30 partners. These include companies throughout the entire value chain, from pharmaceutical manufacturers and logistics to pharmacies, as well as authorities, universities and professional organisations. In the current third stage of the project, there is an emphasis on internationalisation issues, which is why including partners such as multinational pharmaceutical companies, the Swedish Customs Service and the Police Authority is crucial to the project.

"We are working with solutions that not only comply with the EU directive but will also provide added value for the consumer in terms of product safety and consumer information," explains Innventia's Erik Blohm. "Cooperation with international delegations is important for exchanges within the EU. Delegated acts, which involves the legislator in each country writing national legislation, is currently in draft form and will eventually be established by the European Commission. Delegated acts do not include detailed information about the design of anti-counterfeiting seals, so there is scope for new packaging solutions."

Since its inception in 2012, Smedpack has looked at around 40 different concepts. From these, three security solution demonstrators have been produced in conjunction with designers and manufacturers of cardboard boxes, plastic containers and flexible packaging. The solutions, which have been developed with security in mind, can also have positive bioeffects in the form of better ergonomics in hospitals.

"The main aim is to prevent counterfeit pharmaceuticals from entering the legal distribution chain. One current focus area involves developing apps that give consumers greater added value, for example by minimising the risk of combining incompatible pharmaceuticals."