The pharmaceuticals industry (pharma) is central to the global healthcare system, providing medicines and vaccines to treat and prevent human and animal diseases worldwide. Quantis has served major pharma companies in their pursuit of sustainable transformation for over 10 years through our shared focus on science and innovation.

As the world grapples with increasing public health challenges, the pharma sector develops and distributes products to improve human health and quality of life in all therapeutic areas. However, the industry also faces growing pressure to prioritize sustainability and align its business practices within planetary boundaries. From drug manufacturing to packaging waste and disposal of unused medications, the sector has considerable opportunities to address its environmental impacts.

Pharmaceuticals sustainability

As concerns about climate change, biodiversity loss, water and plastics pollution continue to grow, stakeholders are calling on pharmaceutical companies to take action to address their impacts. Quantis can help navigate these key industry challenges to drive sustainable transformation while still addressing the world’s health needs in the years to come.

We understand pharmaceutical industry challenges

With every challenge comes opportunity. We understand the need to continue providing the best treatments to patients while prioritizing environmental sustainability and resiliency in the supply chain. The industry has an opportunity to transform the status quo by addressing these challenges across the value chain and align business within planetary boundaries.

Circular economy

The pharma industry relies heavily on various resources and materials, such as chemicals, water and packaging materials that contribute to pollution. Companies need to adopt circular economy practices both in their manufacturing processes and throughout their product life cycles to reduce resource consumption, emissions and waste.

Biodiversity loss

Pharmaceutical companies depend significantly on natural resources for new drug development and production. To drive sustainable transformation, companies need to ensure that their activities don’t contribute to biodiversity loss and ecosystem degradation.

Supply chain management

The vulnerabilities of global pharmaceutical supply chains highlight the need for companies to build supply chain resilience and adopt sustainable practices to reduce the impact of their operations on the environment and affected communities.

Climate change

As one of the biggest contributors to greenhouse gas emissions in the healthcare sector, pharma companies need to adopt ambitious strategies to reduce not only their own carbon footprint, but also indirect emissions from suppliers.

Engaging stakeholders

The use phase of medicine is critical for healthcare. Companies must engage with downstream stakeholders to ensure the optimal impact of upstream actions to reduce their environmental impact.


Product development is long, costly and requires certain procedures. At the same time, pharma companies rely mostly on innovation to provide the best medicines to patients. Utilizing ecodesign practices, the industry can reduce the environmental impact of its products.

Digital transformation

As the pharma and healthcare industry embraces sustainable practices along the value chain, requirements for reliable data and transparency are rapidly increasing. Key players need to develop and integrate technology solutions that will help measure, track and report sustainability performance at scale. Managing data flows is becoming pivotal to ensure seamless integration and ethical practices.

3 key topics for the pharmaceutical industry in 2024

As the healthcare industry grows, transparency and environmental responsibility take center stage. Three critical challenges are emerging: ecodesign and circularity, sustainable manufacturing and supply chain resilience, and the integration of nature pathways. These challenges signify a broader shift towards accountability and sustainable practices within the pharmaceutical sector, indicating a future of resilience and responsibility in healthcare.

How we can help

For over a decade, leading pharmaceutical companies have chosen Quantis to guide them on the journey toward sustainable business transformation and operating within planetary boundaries.

We work together to set ambitious goals, deploy effective and meaningful strategies and measure and monitor progress.

+ Develop integrated, science-driven strategies and roadmaps that go beyond climate

Companies working solely on carbon miss out on major opportunities to make real progress on their sustainability strategies. We work with clients to set ambitious actions on biodiversity, water, land-use change, plastics and ecotoxicity to avoid impact transfer and align business with planetary boundaries.

+ Accelerate and institutionalize sustainable innovation

By collaborating with clients to integrate ecodesign into their products and packaging, we help meet growing consumer demand for greater transparency around the environmental impacts of products.

+ Activate and transform supply chains

We work to focus efforts and resources on addressing the most relevant impacts and making meaningful strides towards the larger strategy.

Pharmaceuticals sustainability challenges

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