How a pharmacy dared to expose an entire industry and caused politicians to act.
Hyderabad in India is the world’s biggest manufacturer of medicine. More than 50% of all medicine sold in Sweden is made here. But due to lack of environmental laws, the factories in Hyderabad still dump their waste straight into nature. Which means the medicine we take for our health in Sweden and other wealthy countries is actively making people sick and polluting poorer parts of the world. In 2019, Sweden’s biggest privately owned pharmacy decided to do something about it. ​​​​​​​
A new medicine made from polluted water.
We collected 100 litres of of water in the vicinity of pharmaceutical factories in Hyderabad. In collaboration with RISE (Research Institutes of Sweden) we then analyzed the water and extracted the active substances, resulting in a completely new kind of medicine. Sordidum Pharmacum - a deadly cocktail made from pharma polluted water.  
The new medicine was the heart in an integrated campaign.
The new ”medicine” was used in an integrated campaign that made the Swedish public question how their medicines are manufactured, and Swedish politicians demand change from the EU. The pills were sent to politicians and showcased in our pharmacies. To raise awareness we used film, print, OOH and social to direct people to our website hardpilltoswallow.se where people could learn more and download the report from RISE.
“This is a major problem”
The campaign not only got people talking - it got the right people talking.
The campaign received heavy coverage in Swedish news. Back in India, it was covered by the world’s second largest English newspaper - The Times of India. But more importantly, it changed things.
The campaign led to all major Swedish pharmacies launching a shared label for sustainable pharmaceuticals, based on Apotek Hjärtat's original label. 
But as the ultimate result of the campaign, a new law will soon be passed in the Swedish parliament demanding stricter environmental criteria when procuring pharmaceuticals.
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