Spotted at Expo East 2017: Trend Blends

Spotted at Expo East 2017: Trend Blends

While strolling around Expo East 2017, we saw some of the latest and greatest natural food products. Our friend Tracy Miedema from Prescene Marketing noted that there were a plethora of “mashup” concepts – “flavors, formats, features and benefits borrowed from a current or past success reapplied to a new product (or even brand) concept. It’s like the era of the trend blend!” Check out some examples below.   SEAWEED + SNACKING THINS   COCONUT WATER + ENERGY   SAVORY OATS + FROZEN ENTREES   FERMENTED + PLANT BASED   ENERGY + COCONUT OIL MCT’S   COCONUT WATER + SPARKLING WATER   ROOT VEGGIES + CRISPS   MEAT SNACKS + POUCHES   BOTANIC + JUICE & TEA   SEAWEED + ENRICHED PASTA ALTERNATIVE   FIBER + CRISPS   PROTEIN + TEA   PROBIOTIC + BAR   DRINKING VINEGAR + WELLNESS SHOT   SWITCHEL + SPARKLING   COLD PRESSED + UNICORN TREND   NITRO +...
The State of Snacking in 2017

The State of Snacking in 2017

Snacking has evolved to be a more frequent occasion, with an increase in consumers snacking 5 times or more per day. The driving factor behind this is both for the sake of indulgence, and consciously seeking out health benefits. Both areas are growing, but indulgent snacks are still in the lead. Though the choices are becoming increasingly abundant and descriptors for categories are blurred, there are some growing categories of note. PROTEIN POWER Greek yogurt is a high protein option, and Chobani Flip combines it with other diverse ingredient mix-ins.   FARM TO YOU Quinn Snacks “Farm to Bag” model appeals to consumers looking for authenticity in food sourcing.   SNACK BOXES Lunchables aren’t just for kids anymore – there’s a surge in snack boxes that offer sweet and savory bites to tide an appetite over.   RESEALABLE PACKAGING Eat some now, save some for later – these multi serving packs are easy for on-the-go snacking   FRUIT & NUT MEDLEYS  Getting your daily servings of fruit in is now possible in a multitude of ways, going beyond the traditional bar. TAKE A DIP Dipping options both sweet and savory are popping up in convenient packages. Credit: Sweets and Snacks: 2017 State of the Snack Food...
European Packing Insights

European Packing Insights

One of our favorite things about traveling is getting the opportunity to soak up packaging design from cultures outside of the US. Dig in for a rundown of some overarching trends that some of our team members have seen in their European travels. PHOTOGRAPHY ON PACKAGE Using photography can bring big personality to a brand. Coupled with interesting typography and layouts, these image driven labels draw lots of attention to themselves on shelf.             BOLD TYPE SOLUTIONS Typographic choices like unconventional fonts and making objects into letters lend an edge to food packaging, and can speak volumes about the brand.       STRATEGIC WINDOWS Product windows are being seen more and more as a sign of transparency and authenticity in food. Companies are becoming innovative in the way that they use these windows, often having them mimic the shape of the product so that it becomes seamless with the overall package design.       COLOR BLOCKING The banality that minimalism is capable of inducing can be easily overcome by using bright, playful colors to differentiate SKU’s. When lined up side by side on shelf, they create an appealing rainbow.           VIBRANT ILLUSTRATION Illustrations can create a unique, hand-rendered feeling for products. Using contrasting colors and textures sets this type of packaging apart from some of the more structured options on shelf.         Check out the full gallery of images...
Trends Spotted in the Netherlands

Trends Spotted in the Netherlands

Ever wonder what the inside of a shop inside Amsterdam looks like? Now you can get a little taste! Our intern Sydney took a trip to the Netherlands recently, and she took some snaps of awesome packaging that she saw. Here are a couple trends she spotted abroad. JUST ADD ______   There were a lot of pre-packaged goods that combined ingredients for ready made drinks and snacks. Teas with sweetener loaded onto a spoon waiting to be mixed into a cup of hot water were a favorite. “Festival in a Bottle” was an innovative way to add some excitement to a plain bottle of liquor with dehydrated fruits and spices. And for a delightfully simple mix-it-yourself refreshment, there were kits that included everything you’d need for a fresh gin & tonic.     QUITE THE CHARACTER The Dutch are embracing bright and bold colors, in contrast the modern packaging we typically see in the States. These eye-catching hues were seen in shelves all over stores. There were chocolate bars that sported vibrant, contrasting patterns that worked together in perfect chaos. In addition, there were a lot of whimsical illustrations and characters – even in products that aren’t necessarily marketed toward children. The shifty eyes on bottles of Karma Kombucha couldn’t be ignored when walking past the refrigerated section!      IN THE SPIRIT OF TRANSPARENCY One trend that’s clearly a hit across cultures is transparency – both in the literal, visual execution of packaging solutions, but also in the key messaging that brands are sending. The desire to eat “clean” has spurred a movement that pushes companies to lay everything out on the table – particularly ingredients. It...
Food and Beverage Innovations in Mexico City

Food and Beverage Innovations in Mexico City

Mexico City is full of innovations in the food and beverage space. Our creative director Fred Hart and President Blake Mitchell spent 48 hours in this extremely lively city, walking over 23 miles and soaking up all the food and beverage knowledge that this rich culture had to offer. Check out what they learned below.   THE QUEST FOR COLD PRESSED Fresh ingredients to fuel the body abound in Mexico City. We saw multiple quality cold-pressed juice options in the stores, and even got to hang out at the Tonica by Sersana stand! We found that cold-pressed drink packaging in Mexico City is positioned to focus less on visual appetite appeal than what we’ve seen in the United States.     Makers & Innovators This city has an entrepreneurial spirit. We were able to sample a variety of Naka Noke & Sons Sauces, which are an interesting fusion produced by a woman of Japanese descent who moved to Mexico. They have a unique texture that is similar to mole sauce. We also came across the beautiful Son de Miel honey, which mixes business with philanthropy.   Healthy is Happening There is a rise in natural food stores, which boast a variety of food offerings for the health-conscious shopper. While there weren’t any large, Whole Foods types of stores to be found, every block of the city seemed to have small bodegas carrying organic products.   Traditional Markets As with many other cultures, conventional grocery stores continue to sell products high in sugar content. Though the Mexican government was the first to tax soda in order to combat high obesity rates,...