By Elisabeth Comere
As packaging innovators, it is in our best interest and in the interest of our customers to monitor emerging trends in the industry.
I compiled three distinct ways packaging could evolve in the coming year which have been primarily influenced by millennials, the largest generational group of socially-aware consumers globally.
Research released by brand marketing firm Oliver Russell indicates their purchasing choices are influenced by companies that exercise positive social and environmental best practices across the entire supply chain. “Millennials view taking care of themselves and the environment as one and the same,” wrote the authors of the Oliver Russell Brand Amplitude Study.
With on-the-go lifestyles, this generation is looking for healthy and convenient food and beverages that come in packages that are easily opened, resealed for later use, and feature recyclability and other green qualities. In fact, 3 out of 4 millennials would choose soup from a carton over a can for just these reasons. Healthy and eco-friendly products are dominating the purchases in this market, but millennials also look for transparent information about a product’s sustainability credentials, with claims supported by third parties.
For this reason, we need to establish better transparency within our recycling chains in order to communicate the goals, challenges and accomplishments of existing recycling programs. One way to alleviate confusion and skepticism is to incorporate the transparent reporting structures that measure the efficiency and effectiveness of recycled materials and disclose the chain of custody of how these materials are recycled. This is in addition to clearly labeling products so consumers can easily identify how to properly recycle them.
The importance of adhering to the clear labeling approach holds equally true for packaging manufacturers. In a survey of 6,600 consumers in 10 countries, conducted by Euromonitor for Tetra Pak, almost half of the respondents said they find on-pack logos helpful in understanding the environmental impact of beverage packages. One example by which Tetra Pak is leading in this field is by displaying FSC labeling on more and more of its packages made of FSC-certified materials, thus providing consumers with a third-party assurance that the paperboard used to make cartons comes from responsibly managed forests and other controlled sources.
Stay tuned for three more packaging trends tomorrow on TriplePundit!
Elisabeth Comere is responsible for environment at Tetra Pak – the world leader in packaging and food processing solutions. She joined the company in 2006 as Environment Manager for Europe where she helped define and drive Tetra Pak’s environmental strategy and contributed shaping recycling for cartons in Europe. Since 2010, she is based in the U.S., focusing on advancing the Tetra Pak’s commitment to sustainability in the U.S. and Canada and is involved in various industry and customer packaging and sustainability initiatives.