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Global demand for unit dose pharmaceutical packaging is projected to increase 6.4% annually to nearly $57.9 billion in 2025. A heightened focus on patient adherence, infection prevention, and cost accounting in drug delivery will promote growth; unit dose containers contribute favorably to all three.
Blister Packaging Will Lead Demand Value Based on Solid Oral Dose Applications
The widespread use of blister packaging for medications will reflect:
- prescription packaging guidelines and requirements in most European countries
- adaptability to the strict patient adherence and accurate record-keeping formats required in clinical testing of new oral medicines
- preferences of most physicians worldwide to treat patients with oral therapies whenever feasible
- expanding use as over-the-counter drug containers, especially for high-price, low volume medication switched from prescription status
Prefillable Syringes & Parenteral Vials Will Generate the Fastest Growth
Trends boosting demand for unit dose prefillable syringes and/or parenteral vials include:
- the increasing introduction of new and biosimilar therapies for cancer, viral disorders, and other debilitating diseases
- a rise in the number of therapies approved for self-injection, made possible by ongoing improvements in syringe design and safety
- a heightened focus on infection prevention in the parenteral drug delivery systems used in hospitals, clinics, physicians’ offices, and nursing homes
- the expansion of global preventive medicine activities, which will boost the need for single dose injectable vaccines against such diseases as COVID-19 and related variants, influenza, meningitis, and shingles
Mature Markets Lead Sales, Countries with Developing Packaging Markets Grow Faster
Reflecting their advanced drug-producing industries with widely diverse packaging requirements, the mature Canadian, US, West European, and Japanese markets will generate about 60% of global unit dose pharmaceutical packaging demand value in 2025. These countries all have aging and affluent populations and developed healthcare industries that provide both essential and elective treatments broad sections of the population.
Nonetheless, countries with developing pharmaceutical packaging markets – led by China and India – will command significantly faster revenue growth over the long term due to expanding pharmaceutical production capabilities, the adoption of stricter pharmaceutical packaging standards, and the evolving need for higher value unit dose containers.
- The region includes many of the world’s leading proprietary drug manufacturers, which develop and produce sophisticated therapies that have specialized packaging needs.
- Western Europe is also home to a large contingent of generic companies that supply broad lines of prescription and over-the-counter drugs, nutritional preparations, and dietary supplements.
- Regulations and guidelines set by government agencies in many countries mandate the packaging of prescription medicines in unit dose containers.
Thanks to the extensive packaging requirements of the United States’ advanced and diverse drug producing sector, North America will nearly match the West European total for unit dose pharmaceutical packaging demand value. Canada and Mexico will form smaller markets based on drug production levels:
- Canada will provide more diverse opportunities for pharmaceutical packaging than Mexico since it already includes a number of producing divisions and subsidiaries of multinational drug makers, as well as many local research-oriented and generic drug firms.
- The pharmaceutical industry of Mexico consists primarily of generic drug manufacturers with more limited container needs.
The Asia/Pacific region will post the third-largest regional share of unit dose pharmaceutical packaging demand value through 2025:
- Led by the growing drug-producing sectors of China and India together with the well-established proprietary pharmaceutical industry of Japan, opportunities for pharmaceutical packaging in the Asia/Pacific region will extend to a full range of configurations.
- In addition to China, India, and Japan, there will be significant demand for these packaging products in South Korea, Indonesia, Singapore, and Thailand – all of which incorporate sizable drug producing sectors.
Central and South America, Eastern Europe, and the Africa/Mideast regions will make up 20% of global pharmaceutical packaging demand value in 2025; their combined share will expand slightly through 2030. Based on the size and diversity of their respective drug-producing sectors, Brazil, Argentina, Poland, Russia, Israel, and Turkey will account for largest and most diverse sales opportunities in these regions. Demand in the regions’ remaining countries will primarily be relegated to basic, low-cost containers for generic drugs.
Generally, drug makers in the countries with developing pharmaceutical packaging markets will realize faster growth in unit dose pharmaceutical packaging demand value than manufacturers in high-income countries. This trend will reflect the expansion and diversification of drug manufacturing capabilities, especially in China and India. Additionally, many of these countries with developing markets will overhaul their pharmaceutical regulations and standards as part of healthcare improvement efforts, as well as in the pursuit of greater drug export opportunities. These actions will serve to boost and diversify unit dose pharmaceutical packaging demand.