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For softgel capsule manufacturers in the USA and around the world, production costs are a constant headache. These manufacturers need to be able to reduce costs wherever possible without compromising on the quality of the capsules they produce. Fine-tuning this balance can prove difficult.

Read on to learn more about some of the major cost areas for softgel capsule suppliers and manufacturers. With the right approach and a strong understanding of what influences costs at key points in the supply chain, businesses right across this chain can optimize their revenue in a big way. Softgel drying trays are right at the heart of this, and choosing a high-quality tray is an important step toward cost optimization.

Key Cost Factors During Softgel Production

What are these key cost factors for softgel capsule manufacturers and suppliers? Take a look below.

Replacing Softgel Trays

Pharmaceutical production always requires capital outlay before the process can begin. Manufacturers and developers need to invest in softgel machines, materials, and the trays that will be used for drying and handling the completed capsules. While this capital outlay can’t be avoided, it can be managed and optimized to make sure businesses remain viable. This essentially means reducing ongoing costs or keeping these to a minimum.

But this cost minimization is difficult to achieve with traditional softgel trays. These trays may not be as sophisticated as a piece of equipment like a softgel encapsulation machine, but they can still be costly. Organizations need large numbers of these trays, and costs can quickly begin to stack up. Traditional plastic trays can be damaged and cracked by impact, while metal trays may be dented and bent out of shape. Businesses need more reliable trays rather than having to replace each piece of equipment every one or two years.

Uneven Drying and Preparation

Softgel capsules need to be dried and prepared before they are packaged for sale. This drying and preparation needs to be uniform so that all capsules are produced to same high levels of quality. In theory, this is no problem, but in practice, it can become difficult — and any capsules that do not mean uniform standards of quality may not be suitable for sale, increasing the cost.

One of the key factors here is the softgel tray itself. Plastic softgel trays can begin to warp, while metal trays may become deformed after long periods of use. This leads to an uneven surface, and softgel capsules may not sit in position at the bottom of the tray. Instead, they may be funneled toward the center or other areas, leading to an unequal spread and difficulties with capsule drying and prep.

Softgel Loads Need to Be Disposed Of

In some cases, large numbers of softgel capsules may need to be disposed of. This is disastrous for organizations that derive the bulk of their income from softgel production, and for the market as a whole, as additional manufacturing costs drive up prices for the consumer.

Softgels need to dissolve easily when ingested by the end user. Essentially, this means softgel capsules have a sophisticated structure — one that is robust enough to keep active ingredients on the inside but fragile enough to release them when required. Moisture can lead to these capsules dissolving prematurely and being ruined, while mildew can even form on the softgel itself, spreading rapidly across the whole batch.

Anything that compromises the safety of the softgel capsule — i.e., potential toxic contamination of the contents or the growth of pathogens on the softgel capsule itself — is bad news for manufacturers. In order to remain compliant with health and safety regulations, they will need to dispose of any compromised capsules, dramatically increasing the cost of production for capsules that are passed as fit for sale.

Lack of Space Optimization in Production Areas

Softgel capsule suppliers and manufacturers also need to be aware of their use of space. The softgel production and drying process can take up a lot of room within the facility, and while this is unavoidable, facility managers will need to work to reduce this space where possible to improve production efficiency. Storing and preparing capsules for sale also takes up a large amount of space.

With this in mind, softgel capsule manufacturers and suppliers across the USA and beyond need access to stackable solutions. These solutions help them to prepare, store, and manage high volumes of softgel capsules while still optimizing the use of space. Trays that can be stacked safely and easily allow softgel businesses to really get the most out of their space, enabling them to do more with their facilities.

Delayed Production Processes

It’s not just about the use of space — the speed and efficiency of the process also need to be taken into account. If softgel capsule manufacturers are not able to deliver capsules quickly and effectively, the entire supply chain is delayed, resulting in heavy costs. This is why businesses need to examine how they can accelerate the production process without sacrificing quality and reliability.

Drying trays are also important here. The right kind of drying tray will facilitate swift and reliable preparation. In turn, this eliminates delays and bottlenecks across the supply chain, resulting in significant cost savings for everyone involved in production, supply, and distribution.

Molded Fiber Glass Drying Trays

Here at Chemtech, we provide Molded Fiber Glass (MFG) drying trays — a range of products designed to help softgel capsule suppliers and manufacturers optimize operations and limit costs.

These trays are built to resist the warping and denting often associated with metal and plastic products so that softgel producers can make their investment last longer. MFG trays also make it easier to spread capsules more evenly during drying while protecting the capsules themselves from damage or contamination. Resistant to extreme temperatures and designed with a smooth finish to protect gel capsules, these MFG trays meet FDA Title 21 C 176.170 regulations for additional peace of mind.

Browse our product listings and find the trays you need, or reach out to our team to discover more.