Packaging serves several functions for producers and sellers, so each need encompasses a variety of considerations. Where will packages be displayed? What demographic serves as the target market? Are there specific regulations in-place governing packaging practices for the items in question? Answers to these and other vital questions help packagers craft the best approaches for bringing goods to market, but they must also consider packaging trends.
While shelf-stable requirements and food-safety regulations are easily defined and addressed with various available packaging methods, there are other nuances influencing the best strategy for each product. Following the prevailing trends and staying in step with packaging industry best-practices are important concerns for professional packagers striving to stay on the industry’s cutting-edge.
Convenience Reflects Consumer Needs
Consumerism is driven by a complex set of influences impacting spending decisions across society, but in the end, people buy things that speak to their individual needs. Merchandising and marketing are used to target those needs, bringing consumers together with products and services that measure up to their requirements. Professional packaging companies serve vital roles in the process, striving to cater to the needs of consumers in ways that lead to sales. Staying ahead of trends is one way for packagers to stand out.
In today’s fast-paced environment, one of the prevailing trends driving packaging is the public’s insatiable need for convenience. Food products, for example, are increasingly packaged in single-serving units, often designed to be taken on the road, rather than being consumed at home. Energy bars, nuts, and other single portion food items are at home in timeless food-safe bags and pouches, but overall convenience continues to evolve according to modern standards.
Dietary Supplements, for instance, comprise a growing consumer segment which relies on innovative packaging solutions. Powdered supplements and vitamin formulations designed to be mixed with water are now contained in convenient stick packages, enabling precise dosages to be administered on-the-go. Stick packs hold versatile quantities and their slender, compact shapes make them easy to tuck into users pockets for portability. As it has grown more popular with consumers, the versatile packaging method has evolved to include options for packaging liquid formulations as well as dry goods.
Fitment pouches, or spout pouches, represent another packaging advance aimed at consumer convenience. The expandable and flexible pouches furnish alternatives to bottles, without sacrificing a built-in spout suited for drinking or pouring. The containers are easily taken mobile without many of the limitations associated with rigid packaging options. In addition to convenience, the innovative designs offer cost-savings over their rigid counterparts and address another concern trending within the packaging industry: Sustainability.
Green Alternatives Fuel Packaging Innovation
Consumers want to know they are participating responsibly so concerns about sustainability are shaping packaging industry trends. In addition to recycled materials and earth-friendly production practices, consumers are increasingly demanding accountability throughout the packaging supply chain. As well as using reputable methods in their own facilities, consumers want packaging professionals to ensure they are utilizing sustainable approaches to furnish the required packaging resources.
Eliminating waste and maximizing resources also carries over to package contents, with industry trends shifting toward packaging methods that reduce food waste. Reusable packages and food-friendly re- sealable containers are replacing throw-away packaging – embraced by environmentally conscious consumers striving to Reduce, Recycle, and Reuse.
Packaging trends continue to evolve responding to consumer calls for convenience and sustainability. To keep pace with ever-changing needs, creative professionals embrace innovative new packaging designs and craft packaging campaigns that reflect consumer demands.