As part of JGL’s new investment project INTEGRA, worth EUR 53 million, a new, modern facility was opened in Svilno, housing research, development and quality control laboratories, a state-of-the-art pilot plant, offices, restaurant for employees and guests, and a JGL Pharmacy Museum exhibition area that holds the pharmaceutical collection of Prof. Vladimir Grdinić.
The project to expand the Museum’s exhibition area was led by Eva Usmiani Capobianco, Member of JGL’s Board of Directors, and Marin Pintur, Director of the Pharmacy Museum. In October 2020, in cooperation with the City of Rijeka and Rijeka City Museum, JGL founded the JGL Pharmacy Museum in Užarska street, the first specialised museum in which the Croatian and world history of pharmacy is presented in a modern way.
“In addition to the permanent educational exhibit in the centre of Rijeka, our new, modern space covering 400 m2 holds a rare and valuable 1,800-piece museum collection from the field of pharmacy science and practice. It includes a historical pharmaceutical office from the 18th-century pharmacy in Komiža, belonging to pharmacist Eneo Forempoher from Sušak,” says Eva Usmiani Capobianco, adding that the pharmacy also has a VR app of a virtual pharmacist introducing patients to various medicinal products.
Our new space houses the unique and rich historical collection belonging to Prof. Vladimir Grdinić, the greatest Croatian historian of pharmacy, who collected and preserved valuable museum pieces for half a century. It includes an overview of the origin and development of teaching pharmacy at universities across Croatia, a collection of documents, pharmacopoeias, alkaloids, scales, pestles, microscopes, photographs, as well as a number of other items that will certainly be appealing to the Croatian cultural and scientific public. Special attention is also paid to landscaping, which includes the ‘Garden of Health’, a reminder that a thriving natural environment rich in medicinal plant species is the best partner in preserving both physical and spiritual health.
“Croatia is a country with 752 years of pharmaceutical tradition – our oldest pharmacy from Trogir dates back to 1271. One of the oldest preserved pharmacies in Europe is the monastic pharmacy ‘Little Brothers of Jesus’ in Dubrovnik from 1317, which points to the conclusion that pharmacy in Croatia developed almost simultaneously with that in Europe,” says Marin Pintur. With its valuable items of national heritage, the new expansion of the JGL Pharmacy Museum will help create better awareness and enable a realistic evaluation of pharmaceutical science and pharmacy practice in a national and European context, he adds.
The JGL Pharmacy Museum has fulfilled one of its core missions: research, systematic preservation, presentation and affirmation of the rich history of pharmacy. For now, the expansion of the JGL Pharmacy Museum at the Pharma Valley complex is intended exclusively for JGL’s employees, partners and guests. It is expected to become a teaching resource for educational institutions offering pharmaceutical programmes.
“We want to preserve and celebrate the collected valuable exhibits and archives, and pay homage to pharmacists and the pharmaceutical profession and all the beauty and values passed down through the generations. It is our goal to preserve these historical artifacts and all those things that have shaped JGL and its employees both personally and professionally,” says Usmiani Capobianco.