The cliché, “writing on the wall”, referring to something that is essentially a foregone conclusion, fittingly describes the on-going value and functionality flexible packaging brings to consumers. We don’t have to look further than the launch of new Daisy Squeeze Sour Cream to support this claim. Launched in early 2015, this revolutionary flexible package is a stand-up (inverted) pouch design that is turning the sour cream category
Daisy, a wholly family-owned manufacturer of dairy products, partnered with global design and innovation consultancy Continuum (continuuminnovation.com) to help ideate the new package design. Together, they set out to improve consumer experiences by offering functional advantages over the existing tub package while differentiating the brand and product on the store shelf, all the while maintaining the quality of the product inside.
Understanding the consumer, product, and process
Daisy and Continuum set out to design the next generation package by first conducting in-home customer research and then mapping consumer needs to product functionality. Key considerations during the development process included minimizing whey build-up, keeping the product contamination-free during use, dispensing it with measured control and supporting multiple uses for topping, cooking and baking.
In addition to drawing on essential consumer feedback, the team considered how a new packaging concept would work in various retail and merchandising settings. The team also had to identify an efficient assembly-line production method. After almost four years of evaluating new packaging formats, gathering first-hand consumer feedback, prototyping concepts and evaluating packages for manufacturability, the inverted foil pouch made its way to market.
Here are just a few of the functional and experiential features the new Daisy Squeeze package provides:
- Lose the spoon: Eliminates risk of contamination from dirty utensils
- Top of mind: Fits in fridge door so it won’t get lost in the back of a refrigerator and forgotten
- Visual proof: Allows consumers to assess the amount of product left without opening it, encouraging additional use
- More precision: Provides more even distribution of product on foods such as tacos and baked potatoes
While other packaging materials and formats were considered and could have delivered on some of the above features, the flexible package performed the best in meeting Daisy’s needs.
Maintaining product quality and ensuring shelf life targets are always key considerations in choosing packaging for almost all food types. The ability to “dial in” the appropriate barrier properties, reducing light and oxygen to the product makes film packaging one of the best packaging technologies available.
A flexible format also ensures that more of the product can be extracted. Research showed that consumers sometimes felt cheated with certain types of rigid packaging designs that didn’t allow the use of all of the product. Daisy’s Squeeze package addresses this concern by allowing consumers to dispense all of the product, minimizing wasted product.
The delivery system
A major feature of the Daisy Squeeze pouch is the delivery system, specifically the ring-pull fitment, closure and valve. Ring pull technology is common in the food industry being found in popular categories such as dairy products, edible oils and juices. Another integral component that enables many of the features of the new inverted pouch is valve technology by Aptar (aptar.com). The integrated flexible valve in the closure allows a consumer to dispense a controlled amount of sour cream onto a taco, potato or into a measuring cup. By tailoring the performance of the valve, Aptar was successful in meeting Daisy’s strict dispensing requirements, specifically appearance, squeeze force, amount dispensed, product cut-off and cleanliness. Today, we see Aptar SimpliSqueeze® valves incorporated into packaging solutions bringing the same functional features for ketchup, mayo, salad dressing, spreads, toppings, beverages and other similar products.
Many CPG companies search for new ways to innovate or reinvigorate their product lines without changing the quality of their products. With its new squeezable sour cream package, Daisy introduces true, functional innovation that improves the consumer experience in a significant way. Daisy’s consumer insight-driven approach to innovation and selection of best-in-class partners has ensured a high likelihood of success for the new product.
Since launch, the market feedback on Daisy Squeeze Sour Cream has been tremendous, marking a big win for Daisy and for functional flexible packaging.