Empty Gelatin Capsules

Written by Seth Cotterell
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There are two types of companies that sell empty gelatin capsules. The first type deals primarily with the wholesale shipment of very large quantities to large pharmaceutical companies for use in producing medications and supplements. The second type focuses on selling empty capsules to small to mid sized supplement makers. Many home based supplement manufacturers deal with the second type of supplier.

There is surprising variety in the world of gelatin capsules. Before you start producing and selling your own home made supplements, you'll want to become familiar with the different capsules available and their unique specifications. This can help you ensure that you are supplying the proper dosages of your all natural supplements.

Size is the first thing to take into account. Empty capsules come in a wide range of sizes, and you'll want to match your capsule size to the recommended dosage of the supplement. Remember too that in the pharmaceutical industry, capsules sizes are the reverse of what you might think. Small numbers equate to large capsule sizes while large numbers equate to smaller pill sizes. This means that a size 000 is considerably larger than a size four.

Capsule Size Example

A size 000 capsule is one of the largest sizes available. A capsule of this size will hold approximately ¼ teaspoon of supplement. A size four, on the other hand, is much smaller and will hold only approximately 1/25 teaspoon of supplement. The capsule size you use will be determined to a large extent by the supplement you use to fill it. Some supplements are needed only in very small quantities, while others require higher doses to be effective.

Capsule color is also an important consideration. While most capsules are clear, you are not limited to this. More capsule color choices are being offered every day, and you can even mix and match to make capsules with different cap and body colors. The primary difference is psychological, but your customers will appreciate the added variety.

New flavors are also being introduced into the market. This too gives your customers greater freedom of choice and makes them more likely to incorporate supplement taking into their daily routines. Orange is a popular flavor, and mint flavored capsules are also starting to make an appearance as well.

Ordering the Right Capsules

Before you order your supply of empty capsules, you must ask yourself one very important question: What are these capsules made from? Traditional capsules are made from gelatin. Gelatin is an animal by-product. The parts of an animal that are not eaten, the bones, joints, or tendons for example, are ground up to produce gelatin. While this won't affect a majority of your customers, vegetarians will not take supplements encapsulated in gelatin pills. You will need to order vegetarian capsules that are not derived from animals if your customers have this dietary restriction.

The last thing you'll need to get your home based supplement making company off the ground is a capsule filling machine. This allows you to efficiently produce supplement capsules in greater quantities. Small supplement filling machines can produce a few hundred finished capsules per hour, while larger machines can produce several thousand.


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