Creating a Premium Look With Paperboard Packaging for Your Fresh Produce Range

While the world’s economic outlook remains uncertain, one thing your brand can always count on is that consumers will respond positively to products that offer added perceived value. If a product they perceive to be premium is available at an affordable price, it’s highly likely to attract their attention. In the current economic climate, making your mark with strong differentiation is more important than ever, and the fresh produce sector is no exception.

Meeting consumer demands

Premiumizing packaging traditionally meant consuming more materials – for example, using heavier paperboard or incorporating print enhancements like holographic or textural effects – now it increasingly means improving environmental sustainability credentials, functionality, and consumer convenience, too.

By successfully combining these factors, a grower, packer, or retailer can premiumize their fresh produce packaging and differentiate their range by adding a hint of luxury to consumers’ lives. And achieving this can be easy when working with paperboard packaging.

An Ipsos study found 71 percent of American consumers claimed they were more likely to buy brands that used paper or cardboard packaging. 63 percent felt paper and cardboard packaging made a product feel more premium or high quality. Meanwhile, in Europe, 91 percent of all consumers would shop at a retailer that proactively encouraged more sustainable packaging, while 69 percent of Australian consumers would prefer to buy paper-based packaging as they feel it is better for the environment. In other words, paperboard may be increasingly seen as more desirable by today’s consumers, and desirability is key to making any product feel premium.

Increasing shelf appeal

Paperboard packs offer the potential to maximize on-shelf differentiation and brand appeal. Paperboard printing possibilities deliver top-quality graphics, full-spectrum colors, and other enhancements.

Unique structural design can help a pack to stand out from the competition. Unconventional shapes, innovative opening mechanisms, shaped apertures, and integrated handles are just a few of the ways to create impact and differentiation.

Paperboard expands the potential marketing real estate of packaging with more printable space to communicate brand and environmental sustainability messaging. Vivid full-color printing can be used to differentiate between produce varieties, enabling consumers to identify their favorite products at a glance.

Product protection

Food waste is a leading contributor to greenhouse gas emissions, so in addition to giving a premium look, paperboard packaging must perform in order to preserve and protect the fresh produce it holds.

For a clear demonstration of this, consider our work with artisan apple grower BelleHarvest, who sought to replace their flexible plastic bag with an attractive, functional, and sustainable alternative.

The result was a recyclable paperboard pack designed to withstand chilled and humid storage environments. The move to the new pack also led to a 15 percent reduction in apple defects due to bruising – meaning fewer apples were wasted in the supply chain, and fewer consumers were left disappointed by damaged produce. You can read more about this successful project here.

paperboard packaging offers unlimited opportunities for brands, packers, and growers to innovate and premiumize their product lines. No matter what the future holds, businesses can be certain that premiumization will always be a hit with consumers – and the businesses that best capitalize on this will be the ones that find success.