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4 Major food packaging design trends you can't ignore

Friday, May 25, 2018


Ask anyone in the know – from market research giant Mintel to packaging industry expert Smithers Pira, and they’ll tell you that consumer packaging trends in 2018 are evolving in the global market. In today’s world, brands must be ever more innovative and really listen to their customers’ needs in order to gain maximum brand engagement, customer loyalty and a competitive edge.Faced with a wealth of consumer choices in every sector, it is no wonder that the average punter is becoming increasingly harder to please and more difficult to surprise. From innovative snacks to traditional foods, smarter packaging is key. Product packaging is a perfect marketing tool to create visibility and stand-out status for any consumer product.This year, packaging trends are addressing broad themes including aesthetics, sustainability, trust and preservation. Here are four of the major themes for food packaging that are big in 2018.

  1. Back to basics

Maximalist design is a thing of the past – the ‘less is more’ approach has been evident in consumer packaging for some years now and this isn’t going to change this year. While simplicity and clarity reign supreme, getting the core messages across is still key. Take it too far and your packaging veers into abstract territory, with customers struggling to understand what you’re selling.Clean fonts, minimal colours, utilitarian designs and uncluttered labels are all used to convey basic information and the product’s USP. The trick is to tune into the symbols, signs and pared down language that reflect our fast-paced society where attention spans are fleeting and patience is in short supply.Having a simple design package helps the consumer cut through any confusion and get to what the product is all about with the minimum of fuss. In a sea of product choice, simplicity is king and the decision to purchase quickly made.

Source: Blookblock

  1. Back to the future

While the rapid pace of technological change affects us all, many consumers take comfort in the familiar and the nostalgic, the authentic and the trusted. Vintage elements for food packaging are huge in 2018.Vintage designs tend to be more decorative and visually complex than the minimalist designs mentioned above. It’s a way to differentiate your product from competitors, making a connection between your brand and its heritage. Whether or not your product has been around for centuries, vintage-inspired packaging will help imbue it with an aura of authenticity and trust.Established brands can use product packaging to capitalise on their heritage, creating emotional triggers and feelings of nostalgia to reconnect with their traditional customer base. A particular trend has been the release of special editions of products that use ‘old’ designs, thereby reinforcing the idea of longevity while positioning these ‘limited editions’ as future collectors’ items.

Source: Hongkiat

  1. Back to nature

This year brings a deeper connection with nature and a greater awareness of the environment and the importance of sustainable practices that has found its way into packaging – even for food products that aren’t certified organic or particularly natural. Designers are interpreting nature with graphics depicting landscapes, horticulture or other natural elements to highlight the origin or essence of a product.Packaging itself has also been acquiring an eco vibe, ideally using recycled or at least recyclable resources that are easy on the environment – paper and cardboard rather than plastic. Many consumers engage with natural looking labels rather than artificial, colourful designs. Ethical packaging is also becoming more popular, while fair traded products should be labelled as such.

Source: Jayce-O-Yesta

  1. Maximum colour

If you want to draw attention to your product, bright colour is the way to go. This year, bold and colourful combinations are everywhere in food packaging and beyond as a way to create maximum visual noise among competing products on the shelf (or online gallery) and stand out from the crowd.It is well known that colours have a huge influence on how consumers perceive products and brands. According to the influential study The Impact of Color on Marketing, researchers discovered that consumers make up to 90% of subconscious product judgements on the basis of colour alone. What’s more, these decisions are made within the first 90 seconds of seeing the product!The uses of shock colour, including dayglo and fluorescent shades, make products feel exciting, dynamic and contemporary. The same goes for abstract graphic designs, holographic effects, vibrant gradients and mixed media. It’s young, fresh and innovative, which may be just the message your brand wishes to convey.

Source: Digital Creative Packaging

Author: Annie ButtonTwitter: @anniebutton1994

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