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Koura opens world’s first HFA 152a medical propellant production facility

Date: 30/03/2022
  • New HFA 152a production facility will produce low global warming potential (GWP) propellants for pressurised metered dose inhalers (pMDIs).
  • The new propellant will reduce the carbon footprint of pMDI inhalers by up to 90%, down to a similar level as a dry powder inhaler (DPI).[1]
  • New inhaler will bring more environmentally friendly options to patients, all while ensuring they can continue to access the treatments they need.


RUNCORN, UK, 30th March 2022 – Koura, a global leader in the development, manufacture, and supply of fluoroproducts and technologies,[2] today opens a new HFA 152a production facility at their Runcorn site in the UK. Chiesi, the international research-focused pharmaceuticals and healthcare group, signed a commercial agreement to use the new low carbon footprint medical propellant for inhalation product development and clinical trials in 2019.[3]

The opening of this new production facility was conducted by Alessandro Chiesi, CCO at Chiesi and Gregg Smith, President at Koura and marks a key milestone in delivering an environmentally-friendly medical propellant, HFA 152a, which has a low GWP. This new facility will see commercial-scale HFA 152a availability in the market by mid-2022, allowing pharmaceutical companies to meet 2025/2026 commercial product timeframes.



Chiesi Group, a Benefit Corporation and certified B Corp,[4] plans to bring to develop the environmentally friendly pMDI inhalers for patients with asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) by the end of 2025.[5] The innovation from Koura will allow Chiesi to achieve its ambition to reduce its scope 3 greenhouse gas emissions per unit of inhaled products sold by 80% by 2030 and 90% by 2035 compared to 2019.[6]



Gregg Smith, Koura President said: “This is a significant step forward in bringing our sustainable, greener medical propellant Zephex 152a to the market. The opening of this facility is part of a series of strategic investments that will deliver secure supply of low GWP propellant to meet regulatory and commercial needs of our customers ahead of low GWP pMDI launches expected during 2025.”



Mr Smith went on to say: “2022 is an exciting year for HFA 152a and the pMDI market, with a number of key milestones being met.”

Alessandro Chiesi, Chief Commercial Officer at Chiesi said: “Patients should not have to consider the burden of environmental responsibility when choosing treatment options that impact their health. We are proud to supply both pMDI and DPI inhalers and to have taken decisive and ambitious action to ensure patients can continue to access the inhaler options that best suit their needs, whilst innovating to find the most environmentally conscious solution available.”

This step comes as part of Chiesi’s commitment to reach carbon neutrality by 2035 on all direct (scope 1 and 2) and indirect (scope 3) greenhouse gas emissions. Our carbon neutrality announcement last year called for “action over words” in the fight against climate change, and this announcement is the latest way that we are delivering on that commitment.”

For more information about Chiesi’s carbon neutrality commitments, visit: www.actionoverwords.org


About Zephex 152a[7]
Zephex 152a is a new, sustainable medical propellant for use in pMDIs for treatment of respiratory disorders such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Zephex 152a minimises the carbon footprint of pMDIs while safeguarding an invaluable therapeutic option for patients.

About Koura

Koura is a global leader in the development, manufacture, and supply of fluoroproducts that play a fundamental role in enhancing everyday lives. Koura is a part of the Orbia community of companies, working together to tackle some of the world’s most complex challenges. Koura’s products are used in a vast range of applications including energy storage, construction of towns and cities, keeping homes cool, food fresh and even in the treatment of respiratory conditions. Headquartered in Boston, Koura has commercial activities across the world, with operations in the United Kingdom, Mexico, United States, India, and Japan.


About Orbia

Orbia (BMV: ORBIA is a community of companies bound together by a shared purpose: to advance life around the world. Orbia’s business groups have a collective focus on insuring food security, reducing water scarcity, reinventing the future of cities and homes, connecting communities to data infrastructure, and expanding access to health and wellness with advanced materials. The business groups include Precision Agriculture, Building and Infrastructure, Fluor, Polymer Solutions, and Data Communications, which collectively pursue human centric solutions to global challenges. A global leader in specialty products and innovative solutions across multiple sectors of industry and commerce, from agriculture and infrastructure to telecommunications, healthcare and more, Orbia has commercial activities in more than 100 countries and operations in 41, with global headquarters in Mexico City, Boston, Amsterdam, and Tel Aviv. 




About Chiesi Group  
Based in Parma, Italy, Chiesi is an international research-focused pharmaceuticals and healthcare group with over 85 years’ experience, operating in 30 countries with more than 6,000 employees (Chiesi Group). To achieve its mission of improving people’s quality of life by acting responsibly towards society and the environment, the Group researches, develops and markets innovative therapeutic solutions in its three focus areas: AIR (products and services that promote respiration, from new-born to adult populations), RARE (treatment for patients with rare and ultra-rare diseases) and CARE (products and services that support specialty care and consumer-facing self-care). The Group’s Research and Development centre is based in Parma and works alongside 6 other important research and development hubs in France, the U.S., Canada, China, the UK, and Sweden to pursue its pre-clinical, clinical, and regulatory programmes. Chiesi, since 2019, is the world’s largest B Corp certified pharmaceutical group. Chiesi Limited is the UK affiliate, for more information please visit www.chiesi.uk.com. 


Contacts for the press:


Chiesi Group

Alessio Pappagallo

Press Office Manager

Tel: +39 339 5897483

Email: a.pappagallo@chiesi.com



[1] Koura. Zephex. Available at: www.zephex.com/zephex-152a/ Accessed March 2022

[2] Koura. Applications. Available at:  www.kouraglobal.com/applications/ Accessed March 2022

[4] Chiesi Limited. We are a B Corp. Available at: www.chiesi.uk.com/we-are-a-b-corp Accessed March 2022

[5] Chiesi Limited. Chiesi Investment into carbon minimal pMDIs. 2019. Available at: www.chiesi.uk.com/img/news/613_final-021219_chiesi-investment-in-carbon-minimal-pmdis-december-2019.pdf Accessed March 2022

[6] Chiesi Group. Action over words. Available at: www.actionoverwords.org Accessed March 2022

[7] Koura. Zephex. Available at: www.zephex.com/zephex-152a/ Accessed March 2022