Lisa McTigue Pierce, Executive Editor

December 15, 2015

3 Min Read
Top 5 packaging design insights of 2015

Experiential packages not only attract consumers at the point of sale, they keep them coming back for more. See what other packaging design trends emerged in 2015 as Packaging Digest examines our top stories of the year.

We start, David Letterman-style, at the bottom of the list and work our way up to #1…

#5. What do edible packages, easy to assemble boxes, nanocellulose, a self-heating egg cradle (see photo above), a lamp-shade box and a coffee brewer-bag have in common? They are all uncommon. These “6 new directions in packaging materials and design” reveal a capacity to raise brand awareness through functional creativity.

Next: Sweet, salty and spirited

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See new packaging design ideas and technologies at WestPack 2016, Feb. 9-11 in Anaheim, CA.

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#4. Veteran packaging reporter Jenni Spinner uncovered 10 “Sweet and tasty packaging trends on display” at the Sweets & Snacks Expo this spring. Her entertaining short descriptions make this spirited slideshow move almost too quickly, from a milk-carton of cookies and a dispensing canister for Jelly Belly candies to single-serve Pillsbury mini-muffins and Guinness chocolates in see-through packaging.

Next: The beholder doesn’t always see beauty in the design (gulp!)

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#3. Try as you might, you can’t please everyone. But you might learn something from their complaints. We all might learn something. That was the thought behind highlighting criticisms from our readers (via website comments) of five new packages that Packaging Digest reported on in 2015 from major brand owners. The top grievance was when the packages didn’t function as expected. Who can blame them for griping about that?

Next: Busy with beverage bottle breakthroughs

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#2. By the end of the first three months of 2015, Packaging Digest had covered so many beverage packaging debuts that we took stock of the bottles, cartons, cans and labels that really stood out. When we were done counting, we had “10 beverage packaging breakthroughs that get touchy-feely with consumers.” Interactive features such as quick-response (QR) codes and examples of tactile designs helped engage consumers of all kinds of beverages, including beer, wine, spirits, alcohol-free cocktails, tea and carbonated soft drinks.

Next: A “surprising” #1

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#1. Anheuser-Busch introduced its new Oculto beer on a Friday the 13th in defiance of the date’s superstitious “unlucky” status. The brand rose to the challenge with unique packaging that was a big hit with the Packaging Digest audience. But it wasn’t blind luck; it was a carefully thought out design that included a number of “firsts.” The multipack carton was made with metallic fiber-board; the embossed bottle uses a tactile ink on its label, along with other temperature-sensitive and black-light inks that reveal secret messages depending on the environment; and aluminum cans also highlight tactile ink in their printed design. All designed to delight beer drinkers at high-end bars, clubs and restaurants. Oculto beer is sold at grocery and liquor stores, too.

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See new packaging design ideas and technologies at WestPack 2016, Feb. 9-11 in Anaheim, CA.

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About the Author(s)

Lisa McTigue Pierce

Executive Editor, Packaging Digest

Lisa McTigue Pierce is Executive Editor of Packaging Digest. She’s been a packaging media journalist since 1982 and tracks emerging trends, new technologies, and best practices across a spectrum of markets for the publication’s global community. Reach her at [email protected] or 630-272-1774.

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