The future of packaging is greatly expanding and changing, simultaneously with the world. New trends and innovations are springing up everywhere we look. The packaging industry needs to keep updated to ensure that they are following the right paths and ensuring what is right for the immediate and long term future.

Here are 8 ways to “future proof” packaging:

1. Serve: When we think of packaging we think of a product. But it must be recognized and acknowledged that packaging actually performs a service to a customer. It is a technology that delivers value.

2. Be humble: As eco-friendliness and sustainability has grown into a new way of life, packaging should be as environmentally friendly as possible. Avoid making claims about being green if it is not genuinely true.

3. Tell a story: Questions such as “what is it?”, “who made it?”, and “what can this package do for me?” should be asked or thought of when looking at packaging. Graphic and label design are essential ingredients to the equation. This helps in telling a story and giving life to your packaging.

4. Be ready for change: Every day, hour, minute, and even second we experience change. It is all around us and there is no escaping it. Change can be good if you are prepared for it. The ability to be adaptable and accepting to changes such as economic turbulence or changing regulations, allows the process to go smoother.

5. Anticipate where the customers are going: The consumer market is a complex place. Packaging should fit the changing structure and values of the consumer marketplace. By anticipating where consumers are headed, there will be a window open to fit those new needs and produce packaging that fits consumer tastes.

6. Know the whole system: Packaging goes through a value chain. This chain includes how packaging will be used and misused, proper and improper disposal methods, and recyclability. The idea is to understand the whole value chain and not just parts of it.

7. Design for disposal and recycling: We have emerged into a eco-friendly society and we should take our part in helping the planet. Time should be spent to make sure that packaging is taking its part as well. This can be done by incorporating environmentally safe materials and integrating sustainability into production and operations.

8. Avoid “wrap rage”: Wrap rage is what consumers experience when they are dealing with hard to open packaging. It can cause frustration which turns into rage. Keep a focus on what is being produced for the consumer. The idea is to put the consumer first and help to eliminate the struggle.

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