Skipton-based health supplement manufacturer Principle Healthcare has reaped the benefits of a Knowledge Transfer Partnership brokered by the University of Bradford.
Principle Healthcare has been working with the Centre for Pharmaceutical Engineering Sciences at the University of Bradford to research the option of developing in-house granulation technology for their nutritional supplements.
The company purchased pre-granulated materials for its nutritional vitamins, minerals and supplements and wanted to explore the benefits of granulating high volumes of their own materials instead, whilst still maintaining a quality product.
To do this, Principle participated in a Knowledge Transfer Partnership (KTP) with the University which saw an academic work hand-in-hand with the business in order to make sure the process was a success.
This led to the company developing a Material Product Property Performance (MPPP) database to predict the quality of granulating the materials and the re-formulation required. They also investigated the changes, risks and costs needed to convert to in-house granulation.
Following this, positive granulation trials using the University’s equipment led to the company investing in a high shear granulator. The machine enables the company to granulate raw materials themselves rather than buying them in pre-granulated form.
Buying raw materials, rather than pre-granulated, has given them access to a wider range of suppliers. The hot melt granulator can also be used to blend ingredients. This has increased the company’s blending capacity by 12%.
Speaking about the partnership, Clare Campbell, group quality director at Principle Healthcare Limited, said: “The KTP project has exceeded our expectations. It has helped increase engagement with open innovation from all areas of the business and embed it into our company’s core values.
“We have a good relationship with the University of Bradford and will work on future collaborative projects together.”
Principle Healthcare now has the knowledge and ability to granulate raw materials with revised regulations and formulations to support it.
They have cross-functional teams trained to use the new manufacturing process and a training package ready for new users.
The new manufacturing facility also brings with it the capacity to compete in new product categories, enter new markets, and increase international export.
For more information on how you could benefit from a KTP with the University of Bradford, visit the website here.