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Solid Dosage Forms - Coloured

Colour - a visual aspect, widely seen but rarely considered, is not just a physical attribute of the object being viewed - but a psychophysical phenomenon. It is recognised that we firmly associate certain things with particular colours. Red is indicative of danger, whereas green tends to be associated with natural materials. Visual perception is used to indicate the quality of many food products, where a shift in colour from the preserved norm can prompt concerns about safety. The desire to create consistency in colour in food products led to the development of the first instrument for measuring colour, the technological evolution of which has led to the control of colour in many industries from textiles to plastics and automobile paints to health care products.

he use of colour has been apparent in many aspects of society for decades as a means of cosmetic decoration for individuals and their environment, as defensive war paints, as quality indicators and as an aid to recognition of flavours. In the regulated industries like food, cosmetics and pharmaceuticals, colours are controlled in terms of their chemical specification as well as application and inclusion levels. In the health care industry in general, products are usually coloured for identification in order to aid both pharmacists and patients on multi-dosage regimes. Additionally, the appearance of the medication impacts on the branding of the product, which has commercial implications.


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By Nicki Laroiya, Specialities Product Manager and
John Murphy, Pharmaceutical Consultant, of Sensient
Pharmaceutical Technologies
Nicki Laroiya, Specialities Product Manager and John Murphy, Pharmaceutical Consultant, are responsible for the development and supply of formulated systems for the colouring of pharmaceutical products from Sensient Pharmaceutical Technologies, the pharmaceutical unit of the Sensient Group, incorporating Warner Jenkinson.

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Nicki Laroiya
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