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Packaging Design

Thermochromic Ink Powers Go-GURT’s Cool New Packaging

Gallery-Thermochromic Ink Powers Go-GURT’s Cool New Packaging

Packaging for Yoplait Go-GURT Freeze to Reveal, a new yogurt product from General Mills, packs a surprise for consumers who eat the product frozen.

General Mills used packaging design to transform a marketing challenge into an opportunity for its new Yoplait Go-GURT Freeze to Reveal yogurt, which launched this summer. The secret packaging ingredient? Thermochromic ink on the yogurt tubes.

Recognizing that Go-GURT has a trio of use occasions — the product can be chilled, frozen, or frozen and then thawed — the brand owner was inspired to use temperature-sensitive inks that reveal hidden graphics only when the 2-oz. tubes are frozen.

When the product is at refrigerator temperature, one set of graphics is visible on the tubes. But when the tubes are in the freezer, the lower temperature activates the thermochromic ink and additional graphics appear.

“We aimed to create designs that were fun for kids however they prefer to enjoy Go-GURT: When tubes are grabbed right from the fridge, grabbed from the freezer, and when tubes are frozen and then thawed in a lunch box for school,” a General Mills spokesperson says.

Highlighting those consumption options, the packaging includes the message: “Right from the Fridge / Freeze ‘n’ Thaw, Pack it for School / or Enjoy it Frozen.”

“The ‘revealed’ designs [on frozen tubes] were primarily text or small creative additions to the ‘refrigerated’ tube artwork,” the spokesperson says. “There were themes around ‘ice’ and ‘frozen’ shown through our Yeti, penguin, and other designs.”

She adds that “it was a challenge to create designs for both refrigerated and frozen. We were thoughtful about when and at what temperature the hidden messages and images would be revealed and stay revealed — when the Go-GURT was frozen, and not a moment too late. Our team performed multiple frozen and defrosting temperature studies to ensure the packaging would delight consumers.”

Yoplait Go-GURT Freeze to Reveal comes in several flavors, including Berry, Strawberry, and Orange Cream. Boxes hold eight or 16 tubes.

“Go-GURT has a history of bringing fun packaging innovation to consumers,” the spokesperson says. “We are always looking for new ways to surprise and delight [consumers] and have heard so far that they’ve been enjoying our latest summertime innovation.”

Click the slideshow to see more photos of the packaging.


Kate Bertrand Connolly has been covering innovations, trends, and technologies in packaging, branding, and business since 1981.

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