V230i thermal transfer printer installed as part of a compliance upgrade at pharmaceutical contract packer
As the FMD mandates that much larger amounts of data must be processed in packaging lines, equipment must be able to produce durable codes and handle unique numbers at speed
Pharmaceutical contract packaging provider Millmount Healthcare has enjoyed reduced downtime and achieved cost savings following the installation of Domino’s V230i thermal transfer printer as part of a compliance upgrade.
Based in Stamullen in Ireland, Millmount specialises in pharmaceutical and healthcare blister packaging and bottle/tub contract packing, handling solid and semi-solid dosage forms. With an annual capacity of 150 million blisters and more than 30 million bottles, tubs and containers across three sites, the equipment and technology Millmount installs is required to keep pace with the high quality, efficient and compliant outsourcing packaging service the company provides.
In preparation for a specific packaging project in 2014 Millmount decided on an equipment upgrade, undertaking a market survey to establish which printer and supplier would be best suited to its requirement for high-resolution primary coding onto labels that are then applied to vials. 'We had previously been using hot foil coding to apply variable data, but we needed to upgrade to equipment compatible with upcoming legislation and we felt that thermal transfer printing was the best option,' explains Pascal Keogh, managing director at Millmount.
'A market survey was important in order for us to gauge what equipment was available to ensure we were making the right decision, not just for our immediate requirements, but for all future projects.'
Millmount surveyed a number of suppliers and Domino’s V230i thermal transfer printer was identified as the most suitable technology for the project. Developed to deliver performance that meets high-speed, high-resolution coding requirements for flexible packaging and labels, Domino’s V230i printer was supplied by Codico Distributors, Domino’s exclusive Irish suppliers, and the printer was fitted as an entirely new line.
'The fast pace of our packaging halls means simple installation of new equipment is integral so that lines can be up and running as soon as possible,' comments Keogh. 'The V230i was in place and functioning in good time ready for our packaging project to begin.'
Since installing the Domino V230i earlier this year as a new line, Millmount has seen lower total cost of ownership and reduced downtime in comparison to the competitor technology used previously. Domino’s i-Tech ribbon drive aims to eliminate the downtime associated with ribbon break, while ribbon economy means less ribbon is consumed per print, reducing both the cost of consumables and the number of ribbon changeovers.
'We have seen a marked reduction in downtime which is vital in maintaining an efficient packaging facility,' says Keogh. 'Lower consumables use creates savings we can pass on to our customers.'
With an impeccable compliance record, Millmount ensures that all upgrades and developments are made to comply with global legislation. The impending EU Falsified Medicines Directive (FMD) mandates a change from batch to item-level serialisation and will affect European pharmaceutical manufacturing throughout the supply chain.
Craig Stobie, head - global Life Sciences team at Domino
'Domino’s V230i printer encompasses 2D coding support, ensuring we are compliant as the industry moves from batch to item-level serialisation,' explains Keogh. 'As the FMD mandates that much larger amounts of data must be processed in packaging lines, our equipment must be able to produce durable codes and handle unique numbers at speed. The V230i is a key part of this upgrade as we edge closer to the FMD deadline.
'Our new technology is working well within our lines and we know we’ve taken the right decision with Domino’s V230i Thermal Transfer Printer,' he concludes. 'Aside from the suitability, flexibility and easy integration of the printer itself, Domino’s customer service is excellent and its team has been on hand to ensure that the printer is working well within our systems, which has been a great reassurance.'
The V230i is one of numerous serialisation-capable printers in the Domino range, which also includes thermal ink jet, laser, continuous ink jet and print and apply labelling solutions for coding from product to pallet.
Craig Stobie, head - global Life Sciences team at Domino says: 'Millmount’s decision to implement the V230i was a great choice for them considering their particular production requirements; for others, ink jet or laser might be most appropriate. At Domino, we pride ourselves on the extent of our product range, which includes technologies appropriate for every current or emerging serialisation and aggregation requirement. In addition to receiving market leading equipment, by choosing Domino Millmount has gained a partner at the very forefront of emerging legislation.'
Domino Printing Sciences will be exhibiting at Pharmapack 2015 in Paris on 11-12 February, booth 926.