Technavio analysts expect the global prefilled syringe packaging market to exceed $9 billion by 2020, growing at a CAGR of over 11% according to their latest report.

Prefilled syringes are gaining popularity over parenteral drug delivery routes because of the convenience in use, affordability, accuracy, and safety. Prefilled syringes are also used across a wide array of therapeutic sectors outside the traditional domains of anticoagulants, vaccines, and biotech drugs.

According to Sharan Raj, a lead research analyst at Technavio for packaging, “Pharmaceutical drug manufacturers also benefit from the use of prefilled syringes as these syringes help reduce drug wastage, increase the drug lifespan, and increase the vendor's market footprint. Made from COC or glass, they are break-resistant, lightweight, transparent, and have high barrier properties.”

Technavio’s lead transportation and logistics market research analysts have identified the following four factors that will drive the global prefilled syringe packaging market:

  • Increase in demand for prefilled syringes
  • Increased use of disposable medical products
  • Adherence to stringent regulatory standards
  • Rise in prevalence of chronic diseases
  • Increase in demand for prefilled syringes

Safety features and ease of use make the prefilled syringe a preferred option among retail consumers. This is fueling innovations such as multi-chambered syringes, which reduce the level of leachables and extractables.

These syringes offer several advantages such as increasing product life, minimization of drug waste, and convenience in drug administration. Also, these multi-chambered syringes are integrated with advanced delivery systems such as pens and auto-injectors. Though the market is dominated by glass variants, the demand for high-quality barrier in plastic variants has increased. The market demand is concentrated in Europe and the US, which together accounts for more than 80% of the global prefilled syringes packaging market.

Increased use of disposable medical products

The global demand for disposable medical supplies amounted to 190 billion in 2015, and is likely to grow at a CAGR of over 6% during the forecast period. Disposable products reduce the risk of cross-contamination as well as provide safety, sterility, and convenience.

“Growing use of disposable products has also led to the demand for plastic as packaging material due to its cost-effectiveness compared to glass and metallic materials,” says Sharan.

Adherence to stringent regulatory standards

According to the US FDA, healthcare devices need high-barrier packaging materials and sealants that are impermeable and resistant to solvents, grease, chemicals, and heat. Government regulations in developed countries such as Japan demand better barrier and security protection of medical supplies and devices.

In addition, governments of developing countries such as China and India too, have upgraded the industry standards of packaging for the supply of medical products to domestic and international markets so as to maintain quality and reduce contamination, breakage or spillage.

Adhering to these strict regulations requires greater resources (capital and otherwise), and the smaller players are losing out to the well-established players in the market who can adhere to these regulations.

Rise in prevalence of chronic diseases

The increasing incidence of chronic diseases such as cancer, cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases, and diabetes has led to the growth of the vaccines and antithrombotic drugs markets.

The global market for antithrombotic drugs is expected to exceed $21 billion by the end of 2018. This will lead to a proportional increase in the demand for antithrombotic prefilled syringes.