Capsugel invests $25m in vegetarian drug capsules

By Gareth MacDonald | 26 March 2015

Capsugel invests in vegetarian capsules citing demand for lower moisture content and API cross-linking risk.

Capsugel will invest $25m (€22m) to expand production of vegetarian-friendly drug and food supplement capsules.

The US capsule firm announced the investment today, describing it as enabling a combination of new production lines and technology upgrades at sites in Greenwood, South Carolina, U.S.; Puebla, Mexico; Colmar, France; and Sagamihara, Japan.

CEO Guido Driesen said: “Consumers’ appetite for clean-label products is at an all-time high, and continuing to grow.  This trend has contributed to a significant increase in demand for high-quality vegetarian capsules.”

‘Clean label’ is an marketing term used by supplement sellers to suggest a product is healthy without making any specific claims about its impact on a person’s health .

The is no precise defintion of the term, however, it is commonly used to illustrate that a product does not contain artificial ingredients, allergens or – in Capsugel’s case – that it is suitable for people who do not eat meat.

Veg supps

According to a 2013 survey cited by Capsugel nearly 40% of dietary supplement users said they choose supplements in vegetarian capsules preferentially, which was an increase from 26% in an equivalent study conducted in 2006.

Whether ill people taking medicine to treat disease are similarly concerned the capsules containing their drugs are vegetarian is unclear as it was beyond the scope of the survey.

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