Sustainable packaging
CDMO Solutions

Sustainable packaging line positions herbal tea company for sales growth

CDMO Solutions

Sustainable packaging line positions herbal tea company for sales growth

Sustainable packaging

The need for sustainable packaging has never been greater. This is especially true for the growing pharmaceutical industry, with worldwide revenue topping US $1.27 trillion in 2020, the industry was a leading contributor to the 8 million metric tons of plastic waste that polluted our oceans last year.

As Head of EMEA at SFI Health Solutions, a full-service CDMO, Christian Von Dach notes how pharmaceutical and nutraceutical companies are moving toward sustainable packaging.

“We’re seeing a huge trend toward using less packaging,” says Von Dach. “And the packaging we use is increasingly made with recyclable materials.”

He says multiple forces are driving the move toward sustainability. First of all, pharma is becoming aware of its impact on the environment. As such, it’s investing more in eco-friendly materials such as recycled paper, plastic, and cardboard, among other initiatives aimed at reducing its carbon footprint.

Regulations have also spurred packaging innovation. As global management consultancy firm McKinsey & Company points out, governments on all continents have responded to public concerns regarding packaging waste, especially single-use, and are implementing regulations to both minimise environmental waste and improve waste-management processes.

Consumer demand further stokes the fire, with more and more consumers supporting companies that prioritise sustainability. A recent survey shows 32% of US consumers say they support companies that are actively reducing their impact on the environment.

With so many forces at play, it’s no wonder sustainable packaging has become a priority for pharmaceutical companies. But, delve deeper and you’ll notice another nuance. Sustainable packaging is particularly important for companies that make natural supplements and other health-related products.

For these companies, according to Von Dach, sustainability is part of their ethos.

“We work with companies that scrutinise every raw material to make sure their ingredients are organic and sustainable, so it just makes sense that they would demand the same sustainability from their packaging,” says Von Dach.

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50% expected sales growth

SFI Health Solutions is a leader in sustainable packaging, among other CDMO services. With roots dating back to the 1800s, the global pharmaceutical and nutraceutical CDMO specialises in natural healthcare products, offering a full range of services across product development, clinical research, bulk manufacturing, packaging, analytics, supply and worldwide distribution.

Recently, SFI Health Solutions helped an English herbal tea company, which had been acquired by a multinational consumer goods enterprise, introduce a new sustainable packaging line for its US product launch.

The parent organisation planned to launch a line of high-end supplemental teas in the US, but packaging became an area of concern. Although the herbal teas are fair trade, organic and made with the highest-quality ingredients, the packaging consisted of unrecyclable materials, a factor that didn’t mesh well with the parent company’s goal of using only plastic-free packaging within the next five years.

“The customer needed a solution to introduce fast and sustainable packaging for its US product launch,” explains Von Dach. “We’ve manufactured their supplements for years, so naturally they approached us for help.”

In this case, the solution required more than just better packaging. It required SFI Health Solutions to guarantee product and packaging stability as well. After all, packaging is not simply an aesthetic when used for natural supplement purposes. Packaging is fundamental in providing tamper evidence, protecting the product from external factors like sunlight, and extending expiry dates. These factors sometimes make it challenging to swap plastic for a more sustainable material, for example, recycled cardboard.

Since the packaging line the customer needed didn’t exist, SFI Health Solutions worked closely with the customer to develop and implement a new high-speed, cost-effective and sustainable packaging line. The work included assessing technical requirements, sourcing suppliers, and defining user requirements, among other criteria.

With its new sustainable packaging line in place, the company can now scrap its previous non-recyclable packaging, and supply products that reflect its high environmental standards. In this case, its packaging now consists primarily of recyclable cardboard.

“The solution positions the tea company to introduce a fully sustainable line of supplements in the US next year,” says Von Dach. “The high-quality packaging now matches its high-quality products. As a result, the customer expects product sales to grow by 50% over the next two years.”

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Agile solutions at enterprise scale

With a strong global supply network based on decades in the natural healthcare business, the CDMO can meet any packaging requirements, from small runs to enterprise scale.

Plus, with world-class contract manufacturing facilities in the USA, UK and Switzerland, SFI Health can help with all your production needs, including sourcing ingredients, product design, product development, labelling, and whatever else you need to realise your opportunities and address your challenges—wherever in the world your markets are, and wherever in the world you want your products to be.

Visit to learn more.


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