Food packaging innovation unearthed at IFT18: Page 2 of 4

Rick Lingle in Food Packaging on September 04, 2018


Several brand representatives delivered ecommerce insights during a morning session entitled How ecommerce is changing the food packaging landscape timed, appropriately enough, a week after Amazon Prime Day. A presentation by Michigan State University board member and General Mills’ Jay Slagle,  senior R&D manager—delivered by a substitute since he could not make it—led off the session by pointing to the dynamic variety of delivery options that include Shipt, Peapod, Instacart, Amazon Fresh and Prime Now, Walmart To Go. Added to that are “Click and Collect” options from Target, Walmart and Kroger. Some takeaways from the talk:

“Walmart’s model for free Click and Collect pickup is like going to a very large vending machine and providing a code to release the groceries and then putting those products in your car.”

“Unilever has a team of 800 employees focused on ecommerce.”

“General Mills experienced a 50% increase in its global ecommerce business year-over-year.”

“In 2009 Kellogg’s densified cereal box packaging for distribution by making them squatter and while the products failed on shelf, it’s an idea that could do well in ecommerce.”

“The winners in all this will be consumers and companies that adapt their distribution modes.”

Kerri Clar,  associate director of global packaging at Mondelēz Intl. ,was scheduled to present, but because her flight was cancelled moderator Eva Almenar-Rosaleny of MSU stepped up to present on her behalf; key takeaways from those remarks:

“Product availability is mission critical!”

“A downside of ecommerce is that brands can’t billboard effectively.”

Due to online product photos “pack sizing and relative appearance can be confusing if not misleading.”

“The average product ‘touches’ for brick-and-mortar are five, for Amazon the number is 20.”

“Gifting is a key ecommerce opportunity area.”

“Ecommerce is a must-win sales and brand-building opportunity.”


Next: A new kind of aseptic packaging

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