The Institute of Packaging Professionals (IoPP) in June announced the winners of its 2015 AmeriStar Package Awards Competition. Most but not all are foods and beverages.
Judges evaluated and analyzed packages from 14 categories in an online, virtual judging process during the month of April. Judging was based on package innovation, sustainability, protection, economics, performance, and marketing.
Top AmeriStar winners are the Best of Show Award, the Sustainable Package Award and the Design Excellence Award. The Best of Show winner was Drinkfinity from PepsiCo (and designed by Selig Group). It's a personal and portable hydration system that lets users create and enjoy their own beverage experience. It has a reusable vessel and consumable pods that separate liquid and powder ingredients until they are mixed together with tap water just prior to consumption. Drinkfinity also won in the non-alcoholic beverages category.
The Design Excellence Award went to Wrigley Orbit FlexPack, a five-piece flexible chewing gum package for Latin America. Simple but also creative, the package uses common packaging materials (a simple paper/metallized OPP structure) plus heat seal coating and proprietary glue development for easy opening and re-close. Most importantly, the straightforward structure allows the product to hit key entry price point in Mexico and South America (50 cents for a five-piece pack). It also won in the shelf-stable food category. It also won in the shelf-stable food category.
The Sustainable Package Award went to Purina Pro Plan Renew Cat Litter Jug.
The non-alcoholic beverage category had two other winners. Gatorade's Hydration Tracking Bottle (Gatorade is owned by PepsiCo) was developed to better meet the needs of professional and competitive athletes during training and match sessions. The objective was to develop an enhanced sideline bottle that added fueling customization and tracked hydration. The new bottle combines the functional aspects of the existing iconic green/orange sideline squeeze bottle, a new customizable Gatorade pod concentrate system and a new wireless metering cap.
And Lipton & Amcor LatAm also were cited in that category for Lipton Ultra, which uses a new ultra-lightweight hot fill container for the tea brand in Latin America. This package weighs only 22g and utilizes a 33mm finish that features a 50 percent reduction in material over a traditional 38mm finish. The sleek leaf body panels aid in the vacuum while providing visual movement and a comfortable gripping surface for the consumer. Additional benefits of this package are substantial ecological savings, lower operational costs, and a significantly reduced carbon footprint.
In the frozen food category, Whole Foods won for its Self-Contained Master Shipper and Partitions design, "an impressive and innovative solution [that] saves money for the manufacturer and the end user. There is less material used in the pack and less labor and time required to assemble the unit than with traditional RSC and Partition packs."
In refrigerated foods
Schreiber Foods was asked to find an economical, easy to open case to display shredded cheese packages on a shelf instead of hanging on a peg. With the Cabrio Case, product loads flat, ships flat and displays horizontally. It uses less corrugate than other styles of display cases, is easy and intuitive to open and provides a clean customizable tray front that isn’t marred by perforations.
Sargento Balanced Breaks (designed and/or built by Plastic Ingenuity, Bemis and Zumbiel Packaging.) is a thermoformed package and paperboard sleeve, a two-compartment tray and seal that allows the cheese to stay moist and the fruit and nuts to retain their texture. The outer sleeve provides eye catching graphics, nutritional information, unique radial shaped sides and exceptional product visibility.
GLK Foods’ Oh Snap! Pickles (packaged by Ampac) uses a shaped stand up pouch that creates disruption in a sea of sameness. The hourglass shape provides differentiation and portability with its easy to grab indented middle. A registered matte varnish is used to highlight the bold, bright graphics.
In the shelf-stable food category
The Quad Seal Bag is a quad seal, flat-bottom, stand-up bag for Kellogg Special K Cracker Chips. It offers high end graphics, excellent on-shelf impact, great product protection and sustainability.
E-Z SnackPak by Ampac is a new packaging format for the single-serve snack food market. The tetrahedron shaped pouch transforms into a serving tray upon opening – providing a unique consumer experience. The flexible pouch is an innovative category changing package primarily focused on snacking occasions. E-Z SnackPak provides dual functionality, first as an innovative package, and second as a serving dish after uniquely converting into a tray after opening.
Food products also dominated the "other" category (which also included a garage door opener package). Anchor Packaging won for Embraceable Platter and Dome Lid, an oval platter designed with locator ring in bottom to hold standard 8 oz. paper food container for chili, soups, oatmeal, grits, mac & cheese that often accompany main dish, sandwich or salad. And Havi Global Solutions was cited for Create Your Taste Open-Face sandwich carton, which features a built-in divider to separate sandwich halves, allowing consumers to experience the premium open-face sandwich concept to-go. It was a collaboration among McDonald’s, LBP and Havi.
There also were categories for cosmetics, drug & pharmaceutical, electronics, health & beauty aids and promotional/display. For all the winners, see www.iopp.org/ameristar.