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Deeper Insights on Gel Packs


In a pharmaceutical or food industry, temperature affects the stability of a product. If stability is affected, potency and safety of the product are compromised. Human health, even life, will be endangered. One way to achieve temperature assurance in critical shipping of pharmaceuticals, specimen transport, food products, hospital and laboratory testing and air freight transportation is through the use of Gel packs. This is a plastic sac of ice or a refrigerant gel, which is placed in a freezer or other cooling system to lower its temperature for 3 days or when it will become completely solid frozen. After this, it is now ready to be used to keep other items cool. This is specially developed as non-toxic, food grade gel refrigerants that will not liquefy, leak or spill to contaminate other product.

The most common gel types are hydroxyl ethyl cellulose, polymer, or silica coated with vinyl. The amount of gel inside the freezer gel packs varies depending on the type of gel and size of pack. The gel has a lower freezing point than water, so the pack will stay colder longer. Also, some gels are formulated to have different freezing temperatures than others. A common freezing point is 32 degrees Fahrenheit, but gel is also available with a freezing point at 10 degrees Fahrenheit. The additive includes preservative, sodium chloride, minerals, and water. They are usually packaged in tough durable recyclable polyethylene wrappers with heat welded seams to ensure maximum resistance to burst, punctures, tears and splitting. Most of its product labeling is printed with ecological safe, water-based inks.

Gel packs are use in the process of uninterrupted flow of specific thermal profile throughout the manufacturing or collecting, packaging and distribution of a temperature-sensitive product. Refrigerant gels play a major role in preserving biological medical products. These includes vaccines, blood or blood component, allergenic, somatic cell, gene therapy, recombinant therapeutic protein, tissue or living cells that are used as therapeutics to treat diseases. The most common among biological products are vaccines which are delicate substances that lose their potency when they are exposed to temperatures that are too warm or too cold. These products are preserved through a system that refers to cold chain management, through the help of refrigerant gels. It is a system for ensuring the potency of biological product from the time it is manufactured to the time it is administered to a patient. Lack of adherence to cold chain may result to lack of product effectiveness and potency of the product may be lost.

Various advantages of refrigerant gels are to maintain freezing of products for a longer time and does not influence nor affected by the product it preserves because internal liquid does not spread or blur, faster freezing due to ergonomic design and made from high quality materials. In addition, does not stick together, may be produced in various sizes, may be imprinted with an advertising logo, may be used repeatedly, it is simple and easy to use and lastly, it is a performance value.

In the end, there are a lot of pharmaceutical and food companies who relies on Gel packs in ensuring the integrity of cold chain pharmaceutical, biomedical and food products against the demand of temperature. With this, it is also important to find a reliable logistics that could comply with the cold chain shipping requirements of pharmaceuticals to food products.


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