Reduction in volume of materials used and a move to more sustainable packaging materials could greatly improve the environmental credentials of pharmaceutical products. Reducing the size of a tablet, reducing the space between pills in a blister pack and reconsidering the materials used for packaging can have dramatic effects on both environmental and economic costs.
As an example, Novartis have recently pledged their aim to eliminate PVC in their packaging of medicines by the end of 2022. PVC is a widely used material in packaging due to its low cost and high adaptability but its detrimental effect on the environment has led Novartis to try and find suitable replacements, such as cartons. They also aim to be plastic-neutral by 2030 as a part of their Environmental Sustainability Strategy.