Pharmaceutical Packaging: Bormioli Pharma Speeds up on Innovation Together with H-Farm

Collaboration for fast prototyping as well as answering customer needs through qualitative field and technical research.

Research methods were aimed towards understanding the needs of the end users and how they interact with pharmaceutical packaging.
Research methods were aimed towards understanding the needs of the end users and how they interact with pharmaceutical packaging.

Bormioli Pharma—a supplier of glass and plastic containers, closures, and packaging accessories—and H-FARM—an innovation platform for businesses—aim for fast prototyping and an innovative focus on customer needs. The goal is to simplify the business model and process of creating new products, while also taking advantage of opportunities offered by the digital age to improve productivity and effectiveness.

This is a product design project realized by H-FARM specifically for Bormioli Pharma which entailed a qualitative field research—which also involved industry professionals from the medical field and families—and a technical research to identify the most innovative and relevant trends and case studies in the sector. These research methods were aimed towards understanding the needs of the end users and how they interact with pharmaceutical packaging.

A multidisciplinary team from Bormioli Pharma was involved in a 2-day workshop in order to define three project briefs, on the basis of which the H-FARM professionals developed a rapid design and prototyping strategy called Fast Factory, using 3D printing technology among others.

The first prototype is Thread, a pediatric syrup dispenser with an innovative design meant to allow the user to measure liquids directly from the bottle by using only one hand. The second one is Andy, an add-on for bottles, designed for the patient to dose and drink medicines directly from the bottle, in a few simple steps. The last is Plug, a device for the reconstitution of parenteral drugs that integrates in a structured way the bottle and which should allow users to complete the process in a safe fashion. Thanks to this innovation approach, divided into several phases, Bormioli Pharma was able to test a new business model, in which the product design and development phases were distorted: the starting point was no longer the need of a single customer, but that of the end user.

"The need to accelerate our innovation process stems from our desire to respond to the patient and market needs quickly and efficiently," says Federico Piutti, innovation manager of Bormioli Pharma. He adds: "thanks to our collaboration with H-Farm, not only have we managed to develop product prototypes that answer these needs, but we have discovered an applicable strategic and operational approach, which became an integral part of our innovation process."

Now, a little less than a year after the workshop that kicked off the synergy between Bormioli Pharma and H-Farm, 2020 represents the start of a next innovation cycle for the two companies, a cycle which as of today begins with an idea generation phase.

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