Recipharm commits $45M to counteract fake drugs

Pills and vitamins

Contract drugmaker Recipharm is promising to spend $45 million (€40 million) over the next three years to improve drug traceability in an effort to comply with new regulations and combat the rise of fake medicines.

The money will go toward new coding and serialization technologies, Recipharm said, an investment that will allow the company to better tag drug products with identifiable markers that can help prevent counterfeiting. The move comes on the heels of the EU Falsified Medicines Directive, which will require new measures in drug manufacturing starting in 2019, according to the company.

Recipharm already implements track-and-trace procedures in Asia and is now expanding its efforts in Europe to help clients on the continent prepare for the new standards, Corporate Projects Director Staffan Widengren said.

"We know that several pharmaceutical companies are behind in their preparations, mainly because the changes seem so far away," Widengren said in a statement. "In reality, these organizations must look ahead and face this issue head on as changes take a long time to implement in a complex supply chain."

In the U.S., Recipharm has already bulked up its serialization efforts in preparation for the U.S. Drug Supply Chain Security Act, slated to take effect in late 2017, the company said.

Recipharm has been expanding its global capabilities since going public in 2014, spending more than $300 million in three buyouts designed to bolster its capacity across Europe.

- read the statement (PDF)