Package theft and counterfeiting in the pharmaceutical industry cost an estimated $75 to $200 billion globally each year – and the sale of counterfeit medications also puts lives at risk. To solve this challenge, the OTC Group of London, Ontario has developed a state-of-the-art digital print solution with Xerox to prevent theft and counterfeiting of pharmaceutical packaging. The new Xerox Automated Packaging Solution (XAPS) includes both a workflow process and packaging approach to prevent theft and counterfeiting. It seamlessly joins four components – printing, coating, stacking and die cutting – all inline, allowing the OTC Group to produce folded cartons with advanced anti-counterfeiting measures efficiently and affordably.
In 2013, the U.S. passed the Drug Quality and Security Act to address counterfeiting and theft, but pharmaceutical companies have struggled to comply with the strict new requirements on the tracking and tracing of drug packaging that the Act mandates. “While many in the pharmaceutical industry struggle with the ability to conform to serialization and track-and-trace accountability, we’ve engineered a process that works,” said Adam Egan, OTC Group’s VP of High-Performance Packaging (pictured previously). He added that the Xerox iGen and XAPS solution has allowed the OTC Group to perform as the market demands.
The solution, developed by the OTC Group and Xerox, goes beyond the legal requirements, and can actually save clients millions of dollars. For example, one current OTC client required an 800,000 printed carton production run. The Group estimates that the solution eliminated millions of dollars of risk exposure by providing traceability at every level – with the ability to account for every package printed (including waste) while providing that data to the client in electronic format. Existing solutions involve using an inkjet printing process to apply the necessary identifiers at the last stage of packaging. This method has proved insufficient, however, and leaves ample opportunity for fraud, especially when package printing and assembly are provided by an outside vendor.
The OTC Group is an industry-leading packaging and data company based in London, Ontario, offering new production and printing technology, design flexibility and engineered data segmentation tools. It provides brand marketers and retailers with cost-effective, high-speed packaging and promotion solutions with customization and personalization, as well as special-event marketing and market-specific or demographic-specific short runs.