13 spook-tacular candy packages for Halloween

By Lisa McTigue Pierce in Packaging Design on October 29, 2015

Clever graphics on stand-up pouches—along with traditional characters and color schemes—are helping to sell Halloween candy to a most-receptive audience. Americans are expected to spend a whopping $2.6 billion (with a B!) on candy for this year’s holiday, according to the National Confectioners Assn.

A recent visit to a local Walmart superstore unearthed a bevy of bags and boxes—adorned with witches, zombies and monsters, oh my!—that are a real treat for the gremlins ringing doorbells on Saturday.

Among the notable Halloween candy packaging trends I see:

• The majority of secondary packages are flexible bags or pouches—with more stand-up pouches than I ever remember seeing before (gotta love that vertical display!). There were only a couple cartons and other rigid packages in an entire aisle of offerings. (As you may know, flexible packaging can be difficult to photograph sometimes. My apologies if the images aren’t the best.)

• A lot of clear windows show the inner beauty of the primary packs, many of which have matching or complementary graphics.

• Faces looking at you make you look at them. Eyes, in particular, draw consumers’ attention to many of these products.

• Traditional orange and black colors are prevalent—making these packages fade a bit in a sea of sameness.

• A handful of products created “fall” graphics rather than Halloween-specific images, perhaps to help extend the selling period past Oct. 31.

• All of the Halloween candy in the aisle at this Walmart store was shipped in retail-ready displays (see below). This makes the shelves easy to stock and presents an organized look, but the edges and bottoms of the cases hid a bit too much of the bags, pouches and cartons—taking away from their shelf impact. Also, removing the package wasn’t always easy.

Take a look…if you dare…

First up…


Mouths to feed

Betty Crocker fruit snacks (see image above) use a traditional jack-o-lantern smile to show the special Spooky Shapes of the candies. The paperboard carton screams “Halloween” (literally, through the main text, as well as with the images). Do we really need the tag line “Great for Trick-or-Treating and Halloween parties!”? Graphics are designed for horizontal or vertical display in stores (see below).


Are you like me and like to buy variety packs for Halloween? The open mouths of these monsters show what delicious candy is inside from The Hershey Co., along with the brand logos plastered on the top of the pouch. From ghosts to witches and (not shown) mummies, the fun characters engage well on these flat-bottom stand-up pouches. It’s hard to tell from these examples, but it looks like the color scheme of the outer pouch reflects some of the colors of the inner snack packs.


NEXT: Variety show

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