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10 packaging trends and news rockin’ 2018 (so far)

10 packaging trends and news rockin’ 2018 (so far)

Now that we’ve passed the half-year mark, a quick look back reveals what packaging trends and topics caught your attention the first six months of 2018. New packaging designs, sustainability innovations and Amazon-on-ecommerce rise to the top as the most read articles from January to June.

We dive right in with our top 10 countdown list, starting with a new package design for a popular sparkling water brand:

10. Nestlé Waters’ sparkling new packaging signals major rebranding

Leading bottled water brand Nestlé Waters North America made a splash with the global packaging community in the sparkling water category when it launched its first canned product, a new proprietary bottle and a graphics redesign for 25 stock-keeping units (SKUs). Susan Chirico, NWNA regional spring water brands packaging manager, and Antonio Sciuto, the company’s evp and chief marketing officer, provide exclusive insight into the packaging designs and strategy.

NEXT: Amazon has some ideas on what ecommerce packaging should be

What about June?

This half-year list replaces our usual look back at the month before. For those of you who must know, here are the top 5 articles just from June 2018 based on page views at PackagingDigest.com (* indicates an article also in the top 10 list for this year so far):

*1. Chew on this: Packaging trends for new sweets and snacks

*2. 5 top packaging developments in May 2018

3. Custom waste solutions offset food and beverage disposables at conferences

*4. Chill-Can presents a new twist in on-demand cold beverages

5. How Conagra rewards packaging line workers for cutting waste

9. Amazon on creating ecommerce packaging that’s great for all: Customers, companies and the environment

Want to know the trends in ecommerce packaging? Amazon’s senior manager, worldwide packaging, Customer Packaging Experience (CPEX)—Brent Nelson—talks about the packaging challenges and potential solutions in an exclusive Packaging Digest interview back in April 2017. We’ve definitely seen improvements since then, but the basic playing field for ecommerce packaging hasn’t changed. And packaging professionals are still riveted by Nelson’s comments and insights.

NEXT: Recent top packaging developments

8. 5 top packaging developments in May 2018

You love lists! Every month our review of top articles from the previous month generates high interest. In June, you particularly found value in the stories we posted in May. What were they, you might ask? We covered a couple new packages from major brand owners L’Oréal and 7-Eleven, sustainable designs and snacking trends.

5. L’Oréal’s paper bottle: easy on the earth but tough in showers (a water-proof paper package?! Yep!)

4. 5 packaging design trends on the way out in 2018 (this one is a real winner, having appeared on every top list since it was posted in late December 2017)

3. 8 sustainable packaging hits of 2017 (get used to seeing this one because you’ll see it again at the #2 spot in this half-year top 10 list)

2. 7-Eleven tests self-chilling can for new cold coffee (well…hello, self-chilling can…Packaging Digest also posted an earlier article about the technology behind the 7-Eleven can and that article appears in the top 10 list at #6)

1. Chew on this: Packaging trends for new sweets and snacks (this popular article was also #1, based on page views, for the month of June—two months in a row! And you’ll see it again at #3 in our half-year top 10 list)

NEXT: A bounty of packaging design ideas

7. 166 new packages to inspire you

In early 2018, Packaging Digest compiled a database of all the new packages we wrote about in 2017. The searchable, sortable file includes links to the full articles, pictures of the packages and SO MUCH MORE! If you haven’t gotten your free copy yet, check it out now.

NEXT: Self-chilling can improves

6. Chill-Can presents a new twist in on-demand cold beverages

This article—explaining the self-chilling can being used now by 7-Eleven, which we mentioned in our #8 item—goes into detail about the consumer trends driving the market, as well as updates to the self-chilling can technology from The Joseph Co., specifically:

A simpler activation process—from the previous push button to a twist.

A switch to a safer activation ingredient.

While this latest development was 20 years in the making, its viability is already proven by convenience store leader 7-Eleven.

NEXT: Consider bio- and plant-based plastics

5. How sustainable are biodegradable and plant-based plastics?

Plastic packaging is under attack, mainly for its negative sustainability perception. Even before the recent flurry of criticism, some centered on the huge amounts of plastic packaging garbage in our oceans, TerraCycle founder and CEO Tom Szaky considered how bioplastics might solve some concerns—without gunking up the existing/working recycling stream.

NEXT: A delightful dessert design

4. Decadent Delici dessert packaging designed for Costco

Some packaging designs have staying power. This six-pack of reusable heavy-weight (yes, you read that right) glass cups holding premium desserts from Delici is definitely one of them. Packaging Digest’s exclusive interview with Justin Johnson, principal of More Branding, the packaging design firm that developed this package, was posted way back in April 2016. But the brand’s success story still leads as a shining example of how packaging enhances a brand’s marketing message.

NEXT: Noteworthy packages from Sweets & Snacks Expo

3. Chew on this: Packaging trends for new sweets and snacks

Americans snack a lot, and our eating trends are reflected in new product packaging designs. Veteran packaging industry reporter Jenni Spinner took a spin around the 2018 Sweets & Snacks Expo at the end of May and deduced a few new consumer desires. Like “solo snacking,” “downsized delectables” and “multi-part munchies.”

NEXT: Relevant sustainable packaging trends from last year

2. 8 sustainable packaging hits of 2017

At the end of each year, we take another look back to analyze what’s happened over the last 12 months—and why—and create our top lists of the year in various categories. In 2017, we looked at the top packaging design-related news, the top healthcare packaging topics, the top packaging production trends, the top ecommerce packaging developments , the top food and beverage packaging articles and the top articles about sustainable packaging.

This last list has enjoyed ultra-high readership, which is not too surprising considering how critical sustainability is today for most consumer packaged goods companies. Here are the items on this list:

8. First fully recyclable shampoo bottle made with beach plastic points to new plastics economy

7. McCormick’s recipe for packaging that’s more sustainable

6. Is 100% recyclable flexible packaging possible?

5. Sustainable packaging is more important than ever

4. Ahh…Coke refreshes its sustainable packaging strategy

3. Are refill stations the answer to packaging waste?

2. How sustainable are biodegradable and plant-based plastics?

1. 5 exciting, emerging sustainable packaging materials to watch in 2016

NEXT: Don’t follow these packaging design trends

1. 5 packaging design trends on the way out in 2018

Identifying emerging trends isn’t easy, but a lot of experts often take a crack at that at the beginning of a new year. Here at Packaging Digest, we write about emerging trends as soon as we detect them. We don’t wait until the calendar flips from one year to the next.

But we noticed that hardly anyone ever tells you when to stop doing something that used to be a trend. Are you just supposed to guess when a particular design format goes out of style? We had an epiphany! What if we told you?

So we asked packaging design expert Pamela Webber, chief marketing officer at 99designs, to rethink the new-year-trends by explaining what packaging designers should not do today. Here are her five tips:

1. Don’t clutter your designs

2. Nix small type

3. Don’t get too familiar, as there’s little excitement in that

4. Stop wasting packaging material

5. Soften masculine designs

Will this remain our top article of the year when we look back this December? Only time will tell!

Reminder: This half-year list replaces our usual look back at the month before. For those of you who must know, here are the top 5 articles just from June 2018, based on page views at PackagingDigest.com (* indicates an article also in the Top 10 for the year so far):

*1. Chew on this: Packaging trends for new sweets and snacks

*2. 5 top packaging developments in May 2018

3. Custom waste solutions offset food and beverage disposables at conferences

*4. Chill-Can presents a new twist in on-demand cold beverages

5. How Conagra rewards packaging line workers for cutting waste

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