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November 3, 2017
Consumers are increasingly making purchases from companies that support their belief systems and lifestyle choices.
This brand activism affects purchasing behavior of dietary and nutritional supplements marketed for humans and our pets. Concern focuses on ingredient transparency to verify the integrity of ingredients and labeling and also on supply chain transparency that examines safety precautions brands take to handle and ship products to retailers and homes.
Supply chain transparency is built around the notion that brands care about consumer safety and the safety of our pets from the moment the product is made to the moment of final purchase.
Responding to the heightened importance placed on supply chain transparency, progressive manufacturers of human and veterinary health and wellness products outsource warehousing and order fulfillment to pharmaceutical third party logistics providers. Warehouses licensed by the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) to handle pharmaceuticals follow additional regulations and cGMP guidelines beyond requirements for food-grade warehouses covering sanitation, training, facility maintenance, hygiene, operations and inventory control.
Woodfield Distribution, LLC, also known as WDSrx, is a pharmaceutical logistics services provider that is part of the growing trend responding to manufacturers of human supplements and veterinary products. According to WDSrx President Adam Runsdorf, “Consumers and government are demanding product safety and our medical-grade facilities and procedures provide additional safeguards to makers of popular dietary supplements, functional foods and veterinary products.”
For example, certain nutritional supplements including probiotics and gummies require temperature regulated environments and special handling to maintain potency but are delivered from some nutritional supply warehouses in plain boxes to doorsteps where they wait hours exposed to the elements. Medical-grade warehouses handle products according to label instructions and package them appropriately to maintain effectiveness through the delivery process. Inventory management at medical-grade facilities helps assure product effectiveness utilizing FIFO, LIFO or FEFO (First Expired First Out) fulfillment methods.
The specific FDA requirements are detailed in the Code of Federal Regulations Title 21 (21 CFR). Where the guidelines state supplements must be stored in warehouses “in a clean and sanitary condition,” pharmaceutical warehouses must also utilize a system for monitoring environmental conditions. Clean bathrooms must be accessible in all warehouses, but pharmaceutical facilities must provide hot and cold water and soap. Where supplement manufacturers can use warehouses that “take effective measures to exclude pests,” there must also be “written procedures for use of suitable rodenticides, insecticides…and cleaning and sanitizing agents” at facilities approved for pharmaceutical storage. Medical-grade facilities must maintain constant temperature and humidity at all times to protect products.
The cost of warehousing supplements in pharmaceutical facilities is often competitive and includes the peace-of-mind derived from more stringent operational procedures and enhanced compliance benchmarks. According to a recent study, many consumers are willing to pay more for and switch completely to transparent brands. The same study revealed that 94% of consumers are more likely to be loyal to a brand when it commits to full transparency.
Additional product safeguards taken by supplement manufacturers that utilize medical-grade shipping and handling within the supply chain translates into increased customer loyalty, further differentiates product benefits, aligns corporate policy with customer expectations, promotes goodwill and heightens brand awareness.
About WDSrx – Woodfield Distribution, LLC
WDSrx provides third party logistics services and value-added programs exclusively to the life sciences industry for prescription (Rx) products including Controlled Substances (Schedules CII-CV), OTC products, nutritional supplements and components. Founded in 2010, the Boca Raton, FL company maintains facilities in Florida and Texas and conducts business in the United States and internationally. Operations span vendor-managed inventory plans, warehousing, temperature regulated storage environments, fulfillment, transportation management, reverse logistics, consumer/physician call center, packaging and labeling, clinical trial support, e-commerce solutions and financial services management.
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