The world’s leading market intelligence agency, Mintel, has released a list of the top five packaging trends for the coming year. The agency says that packaging in 2018 will play a key role in reducing food and product waste, online product packaging will enhance the e-commerce experience, marine conservation will be an issue many companies will keep in mind when designing packaging and manufacturers will think of contemporary packaging formats for drawing consumers to the center-of-store isles.
“Our packaging trends for 2018 reflect the most current and forward-looking consumer attitudes, actions, and purchasing behaviors in both global and local markets. Such trends as those we see emerging in e-commerce packaging have stories that are just now being written. Others, such as the attack on plastics, are well into their third or even fourth chapters, but with no clear ending in sight. It is those backstories and future-forward implications that position Mintel’s 2018 Packaging Trends as essential to retailer, brand, and package converter strategies during the coming year and beyond,” said David Luttenberger, Global Packaging Director at Mintel.
As consumers become more environmentally-conscious and health-focused, product packaging is playing a key role in encouraging purchases. Mintel’s findings prove that consumers are not only interested in the quality of products but the materials used to package and promote these products.
1) Packaged Planet
“The throwaway culture of today will evolve into one that understands and embraces the role of packaging as a primary means to reduce global food and product waste.”
Previously, consumers cared very little about the type of packaging used for their products because they were simply throw-away items. Now that people are more educated on the environmental effect of pollution and litter, they want to see products that incorporate recyclability or composability into their packaging. Packaging innovations that extend food freshness, preserve ingredient fortification, and ensure product safety have caught consumer attention because of their ability to reduce food waste.
“As more and more consumers embrace online shopping, packaging will play a pivotal role in brands’ and consumers’ e-commerce experiences.”
As online shopping becomes more prevalent, consumers want to see similar initiatives from their favorite e-commerce brands. From package design to method of transit for delivery, consumers have the same environmental considerations for their online purchases.
3) Clean Label 2.0
“Aiming for packaging designs that enlighten consumers’ purchase decisions, brands will reject approaches that offer too much or too little as they can leave shoppers more confused than informed.”
With consumers more informed about products and ingredients than ever before, manufacturers need to be careful to not overload their packaging with information. Minimalist designs have found success in the changing consumer market and are expected to be incorporated in many CPG products in the coming year. Manufacturers need to focus on key messaging rather than putting all of their product information on the packaging.
4) Sea Change
“Plastic packaging adrift in the world’s oceans will become the catalyst driving brands to rethink packaging in a context consumers can understand and act upon.”
Consumers are well aware of the impact of plastic waste in the world’s oceans. Manufacturers who put ocean and animal welfare at the forefront of their packaging designs are expected to find a lot of success in the market next year. Safe packaging disposal and communicating that a brand is working towards eliminating the issue in the world’s oceans are key to encouraging consumers to purchase.
“Brands will look to contemporary packaging formats to help reinvigorate the center-of-store aisles less visited by younger consumers.”
The increasing millennial market has quite the sway in the CPG category. As most of these shoppers stay away from the center isles of grocery stores, with a focus on fresh and chilled food products, manufacturers are looking for ways to encourage millennials to explore the center of the store. By using transparent materials, contemporary designs and recyclability, manufacturers can make products more appealing and seemly “healthier” to consumers.
Learn more about food packaging trends by reading our food blog: New Trends in Food Packaging: 4 Things To Consider to Boost Your Brand