Cold Chain Market for Pharmaceuticals

Cold Chain Market for Pharmaceuticals: Distribution by Type of Primary Packaging (Vials, Ampoules, Pre-filled Syringes and Bags), Type of Secondary Packaging (Cold Boxes, Vaccine Carriers and Insulated Containers), Type of Usability (Reusable and Single-use) and Key Geographical Regions (North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Middle East and North Africa, Latin America and Rest of the World): Forecasted Estimates (2023-2035)

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Cold Chain Market For Pharmaceutical Overview

The global cold chain market for pharmaceuticals size is estimated to grow from USD 5.3 billion in 2023 to USD 9.6 billion by 2035, representing a CAGR of 3.7% during the forecast period 2023-2035.

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Cold chain is a competent system of precisely coordinated steps and equipment that allows the storage and distribution of temperature sensitive materials using active and passive thermal packaging solutions, such as cold chain shippers, insulated containers, films / covers, refrigerants, mailers, freezers, and refrigerators. The cold chain process is extensively being used in the food, dairy and chemical industries, with an aim to extend the shelf life of various products, including fresh agricultural products, flowers, seafood, frozen food, photographic films, and other temperature-sensitive pharmaceutical chemicals / products. The pharma cold chain specifically addresses the requirements of freezing / cryogenic holding temperature for a wide variety of temperature sensitive pharmaceutical products, such as biologics, covid vaccines, human organs, and certain conventional pharmacological interventions, safeguarding their quality, integrity and viability. Further, recent advancements in the cold chain monitoring market have revolutionized the cold chain industry. In this context, the advent of temperature monitoring sensors / devices, such as data loggers and indicators has enabled real-time monitoring and tracking of packaged products during shipment, increasing the overall efficiency of the cold chain. 

However, there are still some challenges associated with the packaging and temperature monitoring of pharmaceuticals in cold chain storage, including risk of damage, contamination, and disrupted temperature control. This can be validated from the fact that, in some countries, about 80% of the drugs are assessed to lose their effectiveness due to inadequate packaging as well as temperature control during their cold chain transportation.  Further, several unanticipated challenges, such as equipment breakdown and excessive heat exposure may lead to the disruption in cold chain. Therefore, in order to circumvent these challenges, industry players have been actively engaged in the development of hybrid solutions. These solutions involve the use of temperature data loggers integrated within the cold chain shippers / insulated containers for improved visibility and efficient tracking of pharmaceutical shipment in the cold chain industry, posing as a promising alternative over conventional packaging solutions. 

Cold Chain Market for Pharmaceuticals, By Type of Usability, 2023-2035 (USD Billion)

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Given the ongoing pace of innovation in this field, coupled with the encouraging market growth of cold chain market in pharmaceutical industry and the continuous efforts of industry players, the cold chain market for pharmaceuticals is expected to witness significant growth during the forecast period.

Key Market Insights

The Cold Chain Market for Pharmaceuticals: Distribution by Type of Primary Packaging (Vials, Ampoules, Pre-filled Syringes and Bags), Type of Secondary Packaging (Cold Boxes, Vaccine Carriers and Insulated Containers), Type of Usability (Reusable and Single-use) and Key Geographical Regions (North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Middle East and North Africa, Latin America and Rest of the World): Historical Trends (2019-2022) and Forecasted Estimates (2023-2035) market report features an extensive study of the current market landscape, market size and future opportunities associated with the temperature controlled packaging in pharma cold chain market, during the forecast period. Further, the market report highlights the efforts of several stakeholders engaged in this rapidly emerging segment of the pharmaceutical packaging industry. Key takeaways of the pharma cold chain market are briefly discussed below. 

Overall Market Landscape of Insulated Containers / Cold Chain Shippers Providers: Majority of the Pharma Cold Chain Companies are Based in North America

The container / shipper providers market landscape features the presence of over 35 large, mid-sized and small companies. Of these, 58% companies were established before 2000, demonstrating expansive packaging experience and expertise in the cold chain industry. Examples of companies (established before 2000, in alphabetical order) include Cold Chain Technologies, Cryopak, Sonocco Thermosafe, and UPS Healthcare. Further, 51% of the pharma cold chain companies are based in North America. Within Europe, Germany emerged as the hub of players engaged in the development of insulated containers and cold chain shippers. It is worth mentioning that, currently, 68% of the companies provide passive cold chain solutions, whereas 27% of the companies offer hybrid cold chain solutions, providing both active as well as passive cold chain solutions. Moreover, industry stakeholders are actively undertaking expansion initiatives for their product portfolios by launching various sustainable packaging alternatives, offering a boost to the cold chain market.

Overall Market Landscape of Data Logger Providers: Novel Temperature Data Loggers to Drive Market Growth

Data loggers are electronic devices that automatically monitor and record environmental parameters, such as temperature, humidity, shock, and light in a cold chain package, enabling stakeholders to measure, document, analyze, and validate the storage conditions. The data loggers providers market landscape features the presence of more than 65 companies, of which, majority offer data loggers (97%), followed by players providing indicators (26%). Further, 44% of the companies offering data loggers were established before 2000, demonstrating their vast experience and expertise in cold chain monitoring market. Examples of companies (large companies, established before 2000, in alphabetical order) include B Medical Systems, Cold Chain Technologies, Cole-Parmer, CSafe, Elitech, Omega Engineering, Sensitech, and Zebra.

It is worth highlighting that 40% of the companies providing data loggers for pharmaceutical cold chain shipment monitoring are based in Europe. Within North America, the US emerged as the hub of players offering data loggers. Recent advancements in the cold chain industry, such as the development of novel and innovative temperature data loggers, are likely to drive market growth of the cold chain market during the forecast period.

Key Drivers for Cold Chain Market Growth: Increasing Demand for Temperature-Controlled Packaging for Storage and Transportation of Pharmaceuticals

The growth of the pharmaceutical cold chain market can be attributed to the ever-increasing demand for therapeutic modalities, such as biologics, and cell and gene therapies. This trend is a function of the fact that every third drug that is approved is a biologic; of these, more than 85% biologics require cold chain management. In fact, the rapidly growing biologics pipeline has shifted the cold chain requirements towards cryogenic storage, which involves the use of liquid nitrogen. Additionally, a number of biologics are being tested in clinical trials. Therefore, the anticipated success of these drugs is likely to act as an impetus to the growth of market. Moreover, the need for importing / exporting goods (food, pharmaceuticals, and chemicals) from / to other geographical regions has emerged as the major driving force for the cold chain transportation industry segment. As a result, the cold chain market is expected to grow considerably in the coming years.

Considering the innovation in the cold chain industry, with respect to the development of novel technologies and platforms for improving the cold chain storage and cold chain transportation processes, the field of cold chain management has garnered significant attention from stakeholders in the past few years. Further, the cold chain market is benefiting greatly from the integration of internet of things, artificial intelligence, and real-time temperature monitoring devices, which aid in ensuring the safety and quality of pharmaceutical products in transit. The benefits offered by these advanced solutions are anticipated to effectively promote the adoption and application of temperature monitoring devices during the forecast period.

Advantages of Cold Chain Packaging Solutions

It is imperative that cold chain packaging has gained attention from several industry stakeholders in the past few years to meet the incessant demand for storage and transport operations across various industries. In order to cater to this growing demand, passive cold chain packaging solutions are specifically designed to keep the internal products cool by insulation. The primary benefit of cold chain packaging solutions is their ability to maintain the quality, integrity and efficacy of products at larger transportation distances. Moreover, these solutions help to improve productivity by streamlining the overall packaging process, while ensuring compliance to stringent quality standards and regulations.

In addition, recent technological advancements have boosted the efficacy of cold chain packaging solutions, by offering real-time visibility (internal temperature conditions) and tracking (location and status) of the products in transit, making cold chain a feasible course for the transport of temperature sensitive products. Further, players engaged in the cold chain packaging industry are actively innovating conventional packages to obtain more sustainable and recyclable options in order to reduce the overall carbon footprint. In this context, in April 2020, New England Biolabs introduced a 100% recyclable cold chain shipping solution, in partnership with Temperpack.

Such initiatives by cold chain companies engaged in the pharmaceutical industry are anticipated to contribute to the increased adoption of cold chain packaging solutions for applications in the pharmaceutical and healthcare industries.

Pharma Cold Chain Market Trends: Companies are Continuously Upgrading the Cold Chain Technologies

The industry stakeholders are actively engaged in the development of various technologies and insulated packaging systems that are long lasting and can be used to store a wide range of pharmaceutical products.

For instance, in September 2022, Peli BioThermal launched Cr?do Go cold chain shipping solution in order to optimize the data-derived from cold chain shipments. This novel shipping solution has built-in automation technology which increases daily throughput and minimizes assembly error, while reducing the program’s carbon footprint. Further, in April 2022, Tower Cold Chain launched KTEvolution container, which possesses a built-in datalogging technology to provide real-time confirmation of internal temperature of the shipment during transit. In addition, it the potential to be fully connected to the integrated smart technology solutions.  Other such companies engaged in the development of novel cold chain packaging solutions include Cold Chain Technologies, Sonoco Thermosafe and Intelsius. The current market landscape features three different types of cold chain solutions, of which, majority are passive cold chain solutions. However, in the coming future, hybrid cold chain solutions are anticipated to capture the largest share of the cold chain industry for pharmaceutical packaging.

Increasing Partnerships and Collaborations in Pharmaceutical Cold Chain Market

Many stakeholders are undertaking initiatives to forge alliances with other industry / non-industry players. Of all the strategic partnerships inked for cold chain shippers, insulated containers, covers and liners and temperature data logger since 2019, more than 25% deals are service agreements, indicating that the stakeholders are actively engaged in providing multiple services related to their temperature controlled packaging solutions, such as reuse and rental services that involve reusing and leasing of the container / shipper for the transportation of pharmaceutical products. Interestingly, high acquisition activity was reported by the cold chain industry players, with an aim to expand their respective portfolios and geographical reach.

Given the inclination of industry stakeholders towards forging strategic alliances focused on the development of cold chain products, we believe that the cold chain market is likely to evolve at a rapid pace, over the forecast period.

Cold Chain Market for Pharmaceuticals Market Size: North America to Hold the Largest Market Share

Driven by the rising interest in temperature controlled packaging solutions, including insulated containers and cold chain shippers and the growing demand for temperature data logger in cold chain transportation industries, the cold chain market is anticipated to witness an annualized growth rate (CAGR) of over 3.7%, during the forecast period 2023-2035. Specifically, in terms of type of secondary containers, the global market for cold chain is anticipated to be driven by cold boxes (50%).

It is worth highlighting that, vials emerged to be the most prominent primary packaging solutions, capturing 40% of the overall market. This can be attributed to the fact that a wide variety of temperature sensitive products, such as insulin and vaccines are primarily packaged in vials. In addition, close to 35% of the market share is captured by the players based in North America. It is worth highlighting that the pharmaceutical cold chain market in Europe is expected to grow at an annualized rate of 4.5%, during 2023-2035.

All the above factors are anticipated to contribute to the healthy market growth of the cold chain market for pharmaceuticals during the forecast period.

Leading Cold Chain Companies Serving the Pharmaceutical Industry

Examples of key companies engaged in the cold chain industry (which have also been captured in this market report, arranged in alphabetical order) include Cold Chain Technologies, Cryopak, CSafe, EMBALL’ISO, Intelsius, Nordic Cold Chain Solutions, Peli BioThermal, SEE, SOFRIGAM, Sonoco Thermosafe, and Temperpack. This market report includes an easily searchable excel database of all the companies developing cold chain solutions for pharmaceutical companies, worldwide.

Recent Developments in Cold Chain Market for Pharmaceuticals

Several recent developments have taken place in the field of cold chain market, some of which have been outlined below. These developments, even if they took place post the release of our market report, substantiate the overall market trends that we have outlined in our analyses.

  • In June 2023, Skycell entered into a product utilization agreement with Marken for using Marken’s Monarch hybrid container.
  • In May 2023, CSafe initiated a collaboration with Central Pharma in order to provide expanded supply chain options for cell and gene therapy products, across multiple stages of development.
  • Further, in March 2023, Fahrenheit AcquiCo acquired va-Q-tec for its temperature-controlled supply chain solutions.

Scope of the Report

The market report presents an in-depth analysis of the various firms / organizations that are engaged in this market, across different segments, as defined in the below table:

Cold Chain Market for Pharmaceuticals: Report Attribute / Market Segmentations

Key Report Attributes Details

Historical Trend

2019 – 2021

Base Year

2022

Forecast Period

2023 – 2035

Market Size 2023

$6.2 Billion

CAGR

~3.7%

Type of Primary Packaging

  • Vials
  • Ampoules
  • Pre-filled Syringes
  • Bags

Type of Secondary Packaging

  • Cold Boxes 
  • Vaccine Carriers
  • Insulated Containers

Type of Usability

  • Reusable 
  • Single-use

Key Geographical Regions

  • North America
  • Europe
  • Asia-Pacific
  • Middle East and North Africa
  • Latin America
  • Rest of the World

Key Companies Profilled

  • Cold Chain Technologies
  • Cryopak
  • CSafe
  • EMBALL’ISO
  • Intelsius
  • Nordic Cold Chain Solutions
  • Peli BioThermal
  • SEE
  • SOFRIGAM
  • Sonoco Thermosafe
  • Tempack
(Full list of 100+ companies captured is available in the report)

Customization scope

15% Free Customization Option

PowerPoint Presentation (Complimentary)

Available

Excel Data Packs (Complimentary)

  • Overall Market Landscape: Cold Chain Container / Shipper Providers
  • Overall Market Landscape: Data Logger Providers
  • Benchmarking Analysis
  • Partnerships and Collaborations
  • Patent Analysis
  • Market Forecast and Opportunity Analysis

 

Cold Chain Market for Pharmaceuticals Container Providers List Cold Chain Market for Pharmaceuticals Type of Product Offered Cold Chain Market for Pharmaceuticals Data Logger Providers


The market research report presents an in-depth analysis, highlighting the capabilities of various stakeholders engaged in this industry, across different geographies. Amongst other elements, the market report includes:

  • A preface providing an introduction to the full report, Cold Chain Market for Pharmaceuticals, 2019-2022 (Historical Trends) and 2023-2035 (Forecasted Estimates).
  • An outline of the systematic research methodology adopted to conduct the study on cold chain market for pharmaceuticals, providing insights on the various assumptions, methodologies, and quality control measures employed to ensure accuracy and reliability of our findings.
  • An overview of economic factors that impact the overall cold chain market for pharmaceuticals, including historical trends, currency fluctuation, foreign exchange impact, recession and inflation measurement.
  • An executive summary of the insights captured during our research, offering a high-level view of the current state of the cold chain market for pharmaceuticals and its likely evolution in the mid-to-long term.
  • A brief introduction to the concept of cold chain packaging, along with information on the historical timeline of cold chain. It also features details on the different types of cold chain packaging solutions, applications of cold chain in the pharmaceutical industry, current challenges and future perspectives.
  • A detailed assessment of the market landscape of 72 cold chain container / shipper providers, based on several relevant parameters, such as year of establishment, company size, location of headquarters, type of cold chain solution (active, passive and hybrid),  type of product offered (containers / shippers, films / covers, refrigerants, mailers, freezers, and refrigerators), type of product material (expanded polystyrene (EPS), polyurethane (PUR), vacuum insulated panel (VIP), expanded polypropylene (EPP), phase change material (PCM) and others), type of product packaged (pharmaceuticals, therapeutics and vaccines, medical samples and others), storage temperature (ambient / CRT (15°C to 25°C), refrigerated (2°C to 8°C), frozen (-25°C to -10°C), ultra low (-150°C to -25°C), deep freeze (-195°C to -150°C)) and service offered (rental services, design services, reuse services, track and trace services).
Cold Chain Market for Pharmaceuticals Key Offerings Cold Chain Market for Pharmaceuticals Emerging Players Cold Chain Market for Pharmaceuticals Partnerships

 

  • A detailed assessment of the market landscape of 70 data logger providers, based on several relevant parameters, such as year of establishment, company size, location of headquarters, types of product offered (indicators and data loggers), mode of data transmission (RFID-enabled, NFC-enabled, UHF, real time, plug and play), type of data captured (temperature, humidity, location, status of shipment, light, shock), type of pharmaceutical monitored (pharmaceuticals, therapeutics and vaccines, medical samples and others), temperature  range (ambient / CRT (15°C to 25°C), refrigerated (2°C to 8°C), frozen (-25°C to -10°C), ultra low (-150°C to -25°C), deep freeze (-195°C to -150°C)). 
  • A benchmarking analysis, highlighting the key focus areas of cold chain container / shipper providers, comparing their existing capabilities within and beyond their respective peer groups (cold chain container / shipper providers based in North America (peer group I), Europe (peer group II) and Asia-Pacific (peer group III)), and providing a means for stakeholders to identify ways to gain a competitive advantage in the industry.
  • Elaborate profiles of the key cold chain container / shipper providers. Each profile features a brief company overview, details on its product portfolio, service portfolio, recent developments and future outlook. Further, the chapter also includes profiles of other leading product providers that offer hybrid cold chain solutions. 
  • An in-depth analysis of the partnerships and collaborations that have been inked between various stakeholders since 2019, based on several relevant parameters, such as year of partnership, type of partnership, application, type of product, geography and most active players (in terms of number of partnerships). Further, the chapter features an insightful analysis of the mergers and acquisitions that have been inked between various stakeholders since 2019, based on relevant parameters, such as year of acquisition, type of acquisition, application, type of product, geography and most active players (in terms of number of partnerships). It also provides details on the ownership exchange matrix and key value drivers.
  • An in-depth analysis of patents related to cold chain market for pharmaceuticals, filed / granted, since 2019, based on type of patent (granted patents, patent applications and others), publication year, application year, type of organization, patent jurisdiction, CPC symbols, emerging focus areas, leading industry players (in terms of the number of patents filed / granted). Additionally, the chapter includes patent benchmarking analysis and an insightful patent valuation analysis, highlighting the leading patents (in terms of number of citations). 
  • An elaborate discussion on regulatory recommendations and guidelines for cold chain market for pharmaceuticals, providing information on regulatory guidelines issued by various international and regional authorities, recommendations for different steps of cold chain and a comparative analysis of regulatory authorities.
  • An elaborate discussion on the upcoming trends and future growth opportunities in the cold chain pharmaceutical industry, featuring details on key tools and technologies associated with connected cold chain (artificial intelligence, augmented reality, automation and robotics, big data analytics, block chain technology, cloud computing, internet of things, radio frequency identification tags). It also presents information on real-time monitoring, methods for its integration in cold chain, growth opportunities and cost benefits associated with real-time monitoring in cold chain.
  • An in-depth analysis of the factors that can impact the growth of cold chain market for pharmaceuticals. It also features identification and analysis of key drivers, potential restraints, emerging opportunities, and existing challenges.
Cold Chain Market for Pharmaceuticals Acquisitions Cold Chain Market for Pharmaceuticals Patent Analysis Cold Chain Market for Pharmaceuticals Trends and Outlook


One of the key objectives of this market report was to estimate the current market size and the future growth potential of the cold chain market for pharmaceuticals over the coming years. Based on several parameters, likely adoption trends and through primary validations, we have developed informed estimates on the likely evolution of the cold chain market for pharmaceuticals market over the forecast period 2023-2035. Our year-wise projections of the current and future opportunity have further been segmented across relevant parameters, such as type of primary packaging (vials, ampoules, pre-filled syringes and bags), type of secondary packaging (cold boxes, vaccine carriers and insulated containers), type of usability (reusable and single-use) and key geographical regions (North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Middle East and North Africa, Latin America, and Rest of the World). In order to account for future uncertainties associated with some of the key parameters and to add robustness to our model, we have provided three market forecast scenarios, namely conservative, base, and optimistic scenarios, representing different tracks of the industry’s evolution.

The opinions and insights presented in the report were also influenced by discussions held with senior stakeholders in the industry.

All actual figures have been sourced and analyzed from publicly available information forums and secondary research. Financial figures mentioned in this report are in USD, unless otherwise specified.

Frequently Asked Questions

Question 1: What is temperature controlled packaging in cold chain pharmaceutical industry?

Answer: Temperature controlled packaging in the cold chain pharmaceutical industry refers to the process of designing, manufacturing, and assembling containers and shippers for storing drugs, vaccines and other pharmaceutical products. Temperature controlled packaging enables maintenance of the temperature of products in transit, actively or via insulation. Further, it offers protection against contamination, ensures product integrity and prevents exchange of heat with the outer environment, encouraging safe and efficient distribution of these pharmaceutical products to end users.

Question 2: Why is pharmaceutical packaging important?

Answer: Pharmaceutical packaging is crucial because it ensures safety, integrity, and efficacy of medicines. It protects packaged products from external factors, such as light, moisture, and contamination, preserving their quality throughout their shelf life.

Question 3: What are the different types of cold chain solutions?

Answer: There are three types of cold chain solutions, namely active, passive and hybrid solutions.

Question 4: What is the outlook for cold chain market?

Answer: Hybrid cold chain solutions are expected to be the most prominent type of cold chain solutions in the coming future as they involve management of active prospects of temperature control, including electricity / battery-powered coolers as well as passive prospects, such as insulative linings and panels, thereby maintaining a temperature-controlled environment inside an insulated enclosure.

Question 5: Which region captures the largest share in the cold chain market for pharmaceuticals?

Answer: Presently, North America captures the largest share of the cold chain market, holding 40% market share.

Question 6: How big is the cold chain market?

Answer: The market size for cold chain market is estimated to be USD $6.2 billion in 2023.

Question 7: What is the likely market growth rate (CAGR) of the cold chain market?

Answer: The market size for cold chain market is projected to grow at an annualized rate (CAGR) of ~3.7%, during the forecast period 2023-2035.

Question 8: Who are the leading companies engaged in the temperature controlled packaging in cold chain market?

Answer: Some of the leading companies engaged in the temperature controlled packaging in cold chain market (which have also been captured in this market report, arranged in alphabetical order) include Cold Chain Technologies, Cryopak, CSafe, EMBALL’ISO, Intelsius, Nordic Cold Chain Solutions, Peli BioThermal, SEE, SOFRIGAM, Sonoco Thermosafe and Temperpack.

Question 9: What is the most common type of partnership model being adopted by stakeholders engaged in this industry?

Answer: Interestingly, service agreements emerged as the most popular type of partnership model adopted by companies engaged in the cold chain market for pharmaceuticals.

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