One of the most prestigious international prizes for pharmaceutical equipment and innovations, the "Facility of the Year Award" (FOYA), was given to the American business organisation Cook Pharmica in 2017 for the "Flexible Filling Line" (FFL).
The project was executed together with Optima Pharma as a partner for filling, closing and isolator technologies. The FFL consists of the OPTIMA MultiUse Filler which was designed and developed especially for the needs of the contract manufacturer. T
he prize was awarded by the Internal Society for Pharmaceutical Engineering (ISPE) and fell under the category "Equipment Innovation." As stated by ISPE, a special feature of the Flexible Filling Line is the ability to process different types of containers including vials, cartridges and syringes on one machine, instead of having three separate lines as in the past. Flexibility can also be seen in regards to the dosing systems (peristaltic pumps and time pressure) and the container sizes that can be processed.
The implementation of robotics and automation to reach the highest level of flexibility makes it the "first of its kind" as was stated in the selection committee`s reasoning. The Flexible Filling Line is being implemented by the contract manufacturer Cook Pharmica for production as well as in clinical manufacturing. All of the possibilities regarding product saving on this line are integrated within the various dosing systems and other technical highlights on the machine. Several product paths are available to make the best use out of the filling, closing and freeze drying functions. Additionally, the line is designed to process oxygen and light sensitive products.