Coatings that mimick sugar coatings


INSTACOAT Sugar Fast Coatings

Product Description

INSTACOATTM SFC is an HPMC and sucrose based, high productivity, aqueous sugar film coating system in dry powder form for reconstitution in water.

Features Benefits


  • Dry powder system for reconstitution
  • Process time savings from rapid coating suspension manufacture
  • Complete coating formulation minus solvent
  • Cost savings in inventory and inventory management
  • Advanced colour control methods
  • Reproducible finished product appearance
  • Avoidance of customer complaints
  • White or ready coloured systems matched to your specification or sample are available. Anti-counterfeiting and branding features can be built-in
  • Meeting diverse marketing requirements is facilitated
  • Colours used are checked for compliance with appropriate regulations in target markets
  • Avoidance of regulatory issues


  • Standard film coating application process
  • Short process time compared with standard sugar coating
  • Easy shaping & smoothing
  • Lower weight gain required
  • Spray application process
  • Wide range of equipment possibilities, conventional & side-vented pans; continuous coaters
  • Automation opportunities
  • Lower operator skill required
  • Consistent finished product appearance
  • Smooth glossy finish with sweet taste
  • Can duplicate existing sugar-coated product appearance and mouthfeel
  • Good pre-print base
  • More reliable over-printing than with wax polished sugar coatings
  • Can be applied in a wide range of equipment designs and sizes from most manufacturers
  • Easy scale-up and transfer to different equipment types or manufacturing sites.

Regulatory information

All products are checked for the regulatory compliance of all ingredients in the target countries and market segments of sale. This determination is made at the time the initial formulation is established, based on customer-supplied information. If market countries and/or segments are extended once the formulation has been established, customers are encouraged to contact us to ensure that regulatory compliance is not compromised.

INSTACOATTM SFC is an HPMC and sucrose based, high productivity, aqueous sugar film coating system in dry powder form for reconstitution in water. It offers replacement of inefficient conventional ladled processes with an atomized spray system capable of application in all types and sizes of coating equipment, with opportunities for automation. The attractive appearance and taste of conventional sugar-coating are retained.

Instacoat SFC is applied in two stages using the same formulation but at different solids levels i) as a shaping base coat and ii) as a smoothing coat. Weight gain requirements at each stage can be varied according to the size and shape of the tablet and the degree of rounding and smoothing that is required. The two stages can be applied sequentially without process interruption.

The following guidance reflects a typical system.

Recommended Solvent System and Reconstitution Level

  • Aqueous: Purified water at up to 26% w/w solids (Base coat)
  • Aqueous: Purified water at up to 14% w/w solids (Smoothing coat)
    Purified water at 80°C ±10°C is recommended. Maintenance of this temperature during coating is not necessary.

Equipment / Accessories

  • Variable-speed mechanical stirrer
  • Mixing Vessel

Calculation of Instacoat SFC and solvent quantities

Base Coat:

Solids level = 26 %
Suggested weight gain = 40 to 60 %.
Determine the amount of Instacoat SFC (26% w/w solids) and water required, based on the batch size of product and the target coating weight. It is normal allow 10% overage to compensate for process losses.

For example: To coat 1.0 kg of tablets to a nominal 50 % wt. gain, weigh -

  • 550 grams Instacoat SFC
  • 1.565 kg hot purified water

Smoothing Coat:

Reconstitution Level = 14%
Weight gain = 2.0 to 6.0 %

Smoothing weight gain may affect shade of coloured coatings and can be adjusted to meet requirements.

Determine the amount of Instacoat SFC (14% w/w solids), and water required, based on the quantity of product to be coated and the target coating weight.

For Example: To coat 1.0 kg of tablets to a nominal 4 % wt. gain, Weigh

  • 44 grams Instacoat SFC
  • 270 grams purified water.

Reconstitution Process

  • Place about 1.9 kg of purified water in a suitable vessel.
  • Heat the purified water to 80°C + 10°C.
  • In the mixing vessel place 1.565 g of the hot water for the base coat
  • In another mixing vessel place 270 g of the hot water for the smoothing coat
  • In each case, stir the water to form a vortex using a propeller stirrer
  • Add the required quantities of Instacoat SFC to the centre of the liquid vortex in a slow steady stream, avoiding clumping and maintaining a vortex.
  • Continue mixing for 45 minutes.
  • Screen both dispersions 60 mesh or finer

Recommended Process Conditions

(fully perforated) pans
(non perforated) pans
Pan diameter (inch) 12 12
Tablet load (kg) 0.8 to 1.2 0.8 to 1.2
Weight gain (%) 40-60
Number of guns 1 1
Liquid nozzle diameter (mm) 1.0-1.2
Atomising air pressure (bar) 0.5 to 1.5
Pattern air pressure To achieve maximum uniform bed coverage
Tablet bed temperature (⁰C) 37-42
Inlet air temperature (⁰C) Set to achieve required product bed temperature
Suspension spray rate Set to achieve required product bed temperature
Exhaust air volume To maintain slight negative pressure in pan
Pan speed Minimum for steady tablet flow through spray zone

*Tablet bed temperature offers the most effective way of controlling the coating process. Where this measurement is unavailable, exhaust temperature may be substituted. However, the relationship between the two measurements is complex and depends on several factors such as pan load, pan depression, pan design and airflow rate. Indicated exhaust temperature may be above or below the true bed temperature. It is recommended that the relationship between the two measurements is calibrated.

Typical Constituents

HPMC; Sucrose; Titanium Dioxide; Edible Pigments; Glidant.