Catalent completes first-phase expansion of Italian plant

Plans to produce chewable capsules at Aprilia later this year

Catalent Pharma Solutions’ Consumer Health business, a supplier of vitamins, minerals and supplements, has completed the first phase of a multi-million dollar expansion of its facility in Aprilia, Italy.

The Aprilia site manufactures easy to swallow, plant-derived Vegicaps capsules that are free from animal derivatives and gluten.

‘We needed to expand capacity for both traditional gelatin and Vegicaps capsules to ensure reliable supply of strong customer demand,’ said Gerry Purnell, European commercial director of Catalent’s Consumer Health business.

Over the last 12 months, the Aprilia site has been expanded to include a new dedicated gelatine production area. New encapsulation machinery has been added for the production of both types of capsules, increasing output by almost one third.

Catalent has also added a new turbo emulsifier to replace open roll-milling equipment. Capacity within inspection and drying areas has been increased and workflows and environments have been reviewed and enhanced to maintain current Good Manufacturing Practice (cGMP).

The expanded site in Aprilia offers customers a complete turnkey service from product conceptualisation to formulation, development, production and packaging.

Stefano Arena, general manager of Catalent’s Aprilia site, said: ‘The improvements have been approved by the appropriate regulatory authorities, and we will continue to expand our facility in Aprilia throughout 2011 to bring more products, such as chewable capsules, to market.’