Medications have many health benefits, but they’re also a major source of plastic waste. Every year in Canada, more than 480 million prescription drugs are dispensed using single-use packaging, generating substantial amounts of residual waste. Not all of this packaging is recyclable, nor is it properly recycled, and this has major consequences for the environment.

Founded in 2009, EcoloPharm is a Quebec manufacturing company specializing in the design and development of eco-friendly packaging for the pharmaceutical industry. In 2019, it became the first global manufacturer in its field to obtain B Corp Certification, granted to companies that meet the highest standards of performance, transparency and social and environmental responsibility. The company stands out through its highly innovative capacity and methodical eco-design process, producing the smallest environmental footprint in the pharmaceutical market. 

For nearly 15 years, EcoloPharm and the thousands of client pharmacies and central fill pharmacies it services across Canada have been helping to significantly reduce the greenhouse gas emissions and pollution associated with prescription drug packaging.

The mandate

Enable the EcoloPharm brand to serve as a strategic growth lever for the company

In the coming years, EcoloPharm aims to increase its presence in Canada and then expand to the United States. To firmly establish itself within the North American market, the company needs to clarify its added value versus that of large, well-established local and international competitors − who are also positioning themselves as innovative and socially responsible partners − and express its identity in a clear, distinctive and inspiring way for all its stakeholders.

To do so, EcoloPharm tapped the BrandBourg team to clarify its brand proposition and modernize its image. BrandBourg’s branding and design expertise, in-depth knowledge of the pharmacy industry and extensive experience with companies that do good work but also “do good” in various sectors were all put to good use in this inspiring new mandate.

The challenge

Elevate the conversation and promote a paradigm shift in an industry that tends to prioritize convenience

While pharmacy professionals are indeed concerned about the environmental impact of their operations, this concern is often overshadowed by operational and financial considerations. Vials and blister packs are commodity product s and, more often than not, environmental concerns are limited to the use of recyclable materials.

To demonstrate its added value as a vital partner and convince key players in the pharmaceutical industry to adopt responsible packaging solutions, EcoloPharm needed to strike the right balance between the rational and the emotional to demonstrate its contribution to the sustainable well-being of both people and companies, and to awaken the inner hero in industry professionals.

Our approach

Refocusing on the why and the how

We carried out a strategic reflection on the brand, starting with a literature review of major industry concerns and a competitive audit. Interviews with EcoloPharm executives and selected clients were then conducted to understand underlying motivations and get a grasp of the brand’s functional and emotional benefits. A collaborative workshop with EcoloPharm employees further crystallized the brand’s ambitions, identified its key differentiators and distinguished the brand’s voice from that of its founder.

This exercise enabled us to distill EcoloPharm’s DNA, articulate its brand story and key messages, and redesign its platform for creative expression.

The result

A brand that’s truly aligned with the company’s social and environmental commitments

EcoloPharm creates innovative, concrete solutions that inspire people to embrace change. More than just a manufacturer of eco-friendly packaging, EcoloPharm is a vital partner in sustainable well-being whose actions, combined with those of its clients, employees and partners, contribute to the material, physical, mental, environmental and collective well-being of individuals and organizations.

The new brand tagline “Well-being, done well  ” sums up EcoloPharm’s brand promise, the benefits it lends all its stakeholders and what sets it apart. It’s also an invitation to key players in the pharmaceutical industry to join the movement created by thousands of their peers who are making a significant environmental difference for future generations.

Rooted in eco-design, the brand’s new visual identity reflects EcoloPharm’s distinctive approach and bold, visionary and determined brand personality. We applied the principles of eco-design to the brand’s entire platform for creative expression, while ensuring that it remains unique, surprising and impactful. Whether through large white spaces, less text for printed matter or lightweight web content, every aspect of the design conveys the same message. The brand logo was refined and streamlined to better reflect EcoloPharm’s DNA. Its rounded shapes evoke the company’s human side, while its simple design expresses process efficiency and resource conservation.

The minimalist colour palette supports the brand strategy to a T. The light-handed use of colour expresses resource conservation as well as the main idea behind eco-design, which is to do more with less.

The chosen typefaces are highly eco-responsible, with their ultra-fine strokes and condensed design optimizing the number of characters per line and saving ink during printing to minimize their ecological footprint.

People form the heart of the EcoloPharm brand experience. The portraits − of the EcoloPharm team as well as pharmacists and their customers − should reflect the vision, daring and perseverance behind brand’s personality.

Ultimate symbols of eco-design, the products are treated like heroes, with low-angle shots highlighting their unique features. The use of technical views reinforces the quality and ingenuity of product design, while conserving both ink and pixels.

Finally, the landscape photos symbolize the main goal of EcoloPharm and its many stakeholders: creating a livable environment for generations to come.

We’re confident that the new EcoloPharm brand strategy and platform for creative expression will raise awareness of the company, whose actions have the power to make a difference for both people and the planet.

"Taking a deep dive into your brand to figure out its personality is not an easy task. It’s a highly personal aspect in the development of a company that, in our case, has deeply rooted values. Teaming up with the wrong partner could be painful for the company and have repercussions on the brand’s value and authenticity. BrandBourg was quick to understand our values and truly listened. With all the different workshops that involved employees, the BrandBourg team was able to bring everyone together to engage in a strategic reflection aimed at rediscovering, redefining and repositioning ourselves. This rich collaboration shed new light on EcoloPharm, and we found a solid strategic partner in BrandBourg."

- Sandrine Milante, President and CEO, EcoloPharm

"We chose to work with the BrandBourg team because of their expertise and their highly supportive process. The team skillfully guided us back to the company’s essence, while always keeping the future in mind. All the different workshops and in-depth discussions with key people in our ecosystem helped validate certain hypotheses and merge values, identity and business objectives. Their deep understanding of the business environment was a major asset and, in the end, the result is perfectly aligned with our repositioning and growth objectives."

- Geneviève Ménard, Director, Branding and Marketing, EcoloPharm

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