Pharma labeling event reinforces growing trends

by Laura Johnson, on March 4, 2016

barcode-labels-300x300.jpgI had the pleasure of attending the 8th Annual Pharma Packaging and Labeling Conference last week in Philadelphia, and it really underscored the importance of enterprise labeling from both a regulatory and business point of view.

This two-day event brought together attendees from a wide range of pharmaceutical and biotech companies. The speakers alone represented close to 30 organizations that are either directly or indirectly involved in pharmaceutical labeling and packaging. Here are a few key takeaways from the event:

Compliance is still top of mind. Not a big surprise given the strict requirements of the FDA’s Drug Supply Chain Security Act (DSCSA). Indeed, many of the sessions either focused squarely on the tracking and traceability of drugs or touched on it as part of a larger discussion. We also saw an innovative way to package and label a take-home kit to combat rheumatoid arthritis that complied with the Unique Device Identifier (UDI) system that’s now in effect.

Have those product “passports” ready. Continuing the focus on compliance, there were two very interesting sessions from the perspective of those who are enforcing the FDA’s mandates—particularly as it relates to drugs crossing international borders. Spokesmen from the FDA Division of Import Operations and US Customs and Border Protection each provided insight into how drugs (and their labels) are inspected and ways companies can ensure faster, more efficient passage into and out of the country.

Labeling is everyone’s business. Just by talking with several attendees, it was clear that labeling in pharmaceutical is connecting with a broader audience—including key decision makers across organizations. VPs and senior directors of pharmaceutical supply chain, logistics, compliance, even sales & marketing are now attending events like this one. Certainly recent FDA regulations have a lot to do with it—but it also points to the fierce competition within the industry. If there are innovative ways to comply with government mandates and get products to market faster, senior management wants to know about it.

What did you think about the conference? We welcome your thoughts.

We also encourage you to stop by the Loftware booth at the HDMA event next week in San Antonio where we can tell you more about enterprise barcode software and how it addresses some of these important challenges.

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Topics:PharmaceuticalsLife SciencesRegulatory