Member of the Bundestag Dunja Kreiser and Dr. Christos Pantazis visit Schaper & Brümmer


On 24.01.2024, members of the Bundestag Dunja Kreiser and Dr. Christos Pantazis visited Schaper & Brümmer and gained an impression of the pharmaceutical company, which is positioning itself for the future. The meeting was initiated by the German Federal Association of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers BAH.

Schaper & Brümmer has been part of the MEDICE Health Family since 2021 and brings its specialization in the production of herbal medicines to the group of companies. In the future, the area of microbiome research will also be strategically developed at the Salzgitter site, as the majority of diseases and health disorders are associated with the gut microbiome.

SMEs are a source of innovation - as shown by the plans of MEDICE with 939 employees and Schaper & Brümmer with 152. However, there are always high bureaucratic hurdles to overcome. A panel discussion and a tour of the production facility in Ringelheim provided an opportunity to take a look at the tradition and development of Schaper and Brümmer and discuss the challenges facing the company.

Discussion and information

The meeting between members of the Bundestag Dunja Kreiser and Dr. Christos Pantazis with the Managing Director of BAH Dr. Hubertus Cranz and the Schaper & Brümmer Managing Directors Dr. Uwe Baumann and Nils Wolcke as well as other executives gave the MPs an insight into the industry with its special challenges, the company's tradition and future plans.

Positioned for the future

Phytopharmaceuticals traditionally enjoy a high reputation in Germany. At the same time, health awareness among the population and the desire for natural, gentle alternatives in the event of illness continue to grow, and with it the importance of herbal medicines. As the phytocompetence center of the MEDICE Health Family, Schaper & Brümmer has been one of the main players in the phytomedicine market for 100 years and will continue to develop this field in the future. With its well-known products, the supplier serves consistently high-selling indication groups - from colds and coughs to stress and sleep disorders to menopausal symptoms and bladder problems with the well-known brands Remifemin, Cystinol, Esberitox and Sedacur.

Experience becomes profound knowledge

Around 1950, long before the German Medicines Act required it, Schaper & Brümmer took up the challenge of scientifically substantiating the composition, efficacy and tolerability of its own phytopharmaceuticals - until then, the use of such preparations had been based primarily on traditional knowledge and experience. Many active ingredients of the medicinal plants used have now been identified. Numerous publications on the phytopharmaceuticals of Schaper & Brümmer have appeared since then. These have even provided support for updating important plant monographs and medical guidelines that doctors and pharmacists use to guide their recommendations.

There is no question that the well-founded and tested quality of herbal medicinal products is of great benefit to patients, as they are particularly safe. From a regulatory perspective, however, it is extremely difficult to bring new herbal medicinal products to market. The necessary studies and approval procedures represent a heavy burden for a medium-sized company. The production of herbal medicinal products is a highly regulated niche. The future is therefore more likely to belong to dietary supplements and medical products with simpler approval procedures. In addition, therapy-related digital health applications will play a major role in supporting holistic treatment options. One example: an app is currently being implemented that offers support to women during the menopause.

Burdens due to high development costs and bureaucracy

The costs for a new herbal medicinal product can sometimes run into the double-digit millions. The development time can take up to 10 years due to the necessary preclinical and clinical studies. An approved herbal medicinal product - even if the active ingredient has been tried and tested in naturopathy for many years - must meet the same requirements as a chemical medicinal product. However, the production of phytopharmaceuticals is more difficult because the raw material is never the same. Each plant has an individual composition. In the course of extraction and further processing, the herbal raw materials are standardized to certain markers and active ingredients. This is a technically and analytically complex step that is not necessary with chemical ingredients.

In addition, separate approval procedures and sometimes new studies are required for market entry into new countries. Schaper & Brümmer has already met this challenge in many countries. Many herbal products are available in 35 countries.

The MEDICE Health Family has set itself the goal of becoming a leading global developer and provider of healthcare solutions. In addition to the production of pharmaceuticals "Made in Germany", patient-oriented digital health applications and holistic nutrition concepts will generate further exciting innovations in the future.

Contact Simone Marschall

Schaper & Brümmer GmbH & Co. KG