Germany-based Schreiner MediPharm has partnered with German carton packaging converter Edelmann Group to demonstrate the capability of smart packaging in pharmaceutical applications.
The result is a smart medicine packaging option featuring digital features such as BitSecure copy detection technology, as well as a closure seal with integrated NFC chip and void effect for tamper evidence.
Schreiner MediPharm noted smart packaging builds a digital bridge between manufacturers, distributors and patients by opening new platforms of communication between them, with pharmaceutical packaging of the future needing to be about more than marking and protecting medicines.
By showcasing authentication and tamper evidence, Schreiner MediPharm and Edelmann identified how they have shown pharmaceutical manufacturers the possibilities for supply chain security and compliance with the EU Falsified Medicines Directives, which has been in effect since February 2019.
BitSecure copy detection technology is a printed, digital security feature based on a high-resolution, random pattern whose intricate details are not discernible by the naked eye. In an attempt to copy the small random pattern, whose size is just a few millimeters, the printed image suffers a loss in precision and optical details. The pattern can be authenticated quickly and flexibly on-site using a smartphone or handheld reader, and analyzed via related software. Due to its small size, the cost-efficient authentication technology can be easily integrated into existing packaging or label designs.
The closure seal with a void effect and an integrated NFC chip combines analog and digital technologies, offering double tamper evidence. Before the seal’s initial opening, the user reads the NFC chip using a smartphone and related app to receive confirmation of the product’s authenticity. If the seal is peeled off, an irreversible void effect will appear. If the user opens the packaging without previously peeling off the seal, the seal will break along the perforation. If the NFC chip is read again, a warning on the smartphone will indicate that the packaging has been previously opened. This makes any tampering attempt clearly visible. Additionally, interactive applications for patient information and assistance may be integrated into the NFC chip.