Doliprane out of stock in pharmacies: Upsa rubs his hands in Agen…

the essential
Efferalgan and Dafalgan products manufactured in Agen, unlike Doliprane, are not sold out in pharmacies. The production location, but also the lack of dependence on China for the active ingredients explain this favorable situation.

Doliprane (the best-selling paracetamol-based drug on the French market) is out of stock at pharmacies. This deficiency is recognized by the manufacturer Sanofi, which highlights “an unprecedented increase in demand”. In question: the seasonal flu, the traditional spring colds, but also Covid-19 (whose symptoms are treated with paracetamol).

However, in the absence of Doliprane, doctors may refer consumers and patients to Dolipram and Efferalgan, two other forms of Upsa brand acetaminophen. These Agen-made products will obviously take advantage of luck to nibble at market share.

“Not Just Doliprane in Life”

“Apart from a few quantity-related references, for example Dafalgan 1 g capsule and Efferalgan Odis 500 mg, we are not aware of any stock shortages,” explains Upsa’s management. We are monitoring the situation in pharmacies very closely, since the shortage at our competitor will have a mechanical impact on our sales. Paracetamol is an essential molecule, but there is not only Doliprane in life: there are also and above all Efferalgan and Dafalgran, which are French products.

According to Upsa, this “Made in France” is an advantage that does not fail to underline “The relevance of our strategy focused on strong industrial capabilities in Agen and ensuring agility to ensure continued access to our paracetamol-based medicines for patients and healthcare professionals, depending on China to supply its active ingredients, while Upsa mainly supports its supplies from the United States (85% vs. 15% in China). A successful strategy that was initiated five years ago and aimed precisely “to limit the risk of stockouts and shortages and to ensure access to medicines to meet the needs of all patients”.

Strong stresses on aluminum

“Manufacture in France is in our DNA, adds Upsa’s management. We have diversified our sourcing to avoid dependencies but also to take into account cost aspects such as social responsibility and the environment (CSR). And we want to go further and Achieve 100%.” French supply, hence our partnership with Seqens, who will supply us with paracetamol from their Rhône-Alpes site until 2024.”

Upsa therefore sees its strategic decisions as confirmed. However, vigilance is warranted because other tensions exist, particularly with packaging materials: their cost is increasing and so are the cost of producing medicine boxes. The surge in “commodities” was felt in the second half of 2021 during the global recovery, but the Ukraine crisis is exacerbating the situation. Russia produces 80% of the alumina needed for aluminum production, an industry sector also under pressure from gas prices. An indispensable aluminum for the production of tablets. “This forces us to be agile, emphasize Upsa’s managers. We are working with Bercy to find solutions. But our costs are skyrocketing while we can’t pass that increase on to our price-locked products.”

Vigilance and agility in purchasing are therefore essential, but despite these tensions, deliveries to pharmacies, wholesalers and hospitals continue as normal. The Agen and Passage-d’Agen factories are there: every year they produce about 300 million boxes, including 270 million stamped Dafalgan or Efferalgan. What to be largely safe from migraines.

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