While sustainability is undeniably the main talking point when it comes to pet food packaging trends, there are other factors at play in the industry segment. Convenience, as always, is at the forefront of consumer minds, and newer considerations on both the manufacturing and end user sides of things mean there’s plenty to keep in mind when packaging is being discussed:
“The importance of consumer convenience packaging features has increased since 2019 in consumers’ minds. The percentage of premium pet food consumers ranking convenience features as "Extremely/Very Important" has increased for several key attributes, including ease of opening (+7%), ease of storing (+5%) and ease of pouring (+7%).” – William Kuecker, vice president of marketing, North America, for Mondi. (Data referenced is from a joint Mondi/Dow consumer survey conducted in April 2021.)
Data-driven production efficiencies
“We’re seeing pet food manufacturers become more interested in the data provided by the packaging equipment’s, programmable logic controllers (PLC). With guidance from their machine manufacturer, they can use this data get a clearer picture of their downtime (i.e., when the machine is idle or waiting for more bags or product to be presented) and create process efficiencies through packaging automation or other measures.” – Braden Beam, bag filling and palletizing business unit leader for BW Flexible Systems.
“All packaging formats must now consider the demands of e-commerce. From resizing packages to fit within home delivery weight limits to increased bag strength that withstands all touch points for e-commerce delivery are a much bigger part of the packaging design conversation than in years past. By offering convenience, cost and efficiency, e-commerce is emerging as a key driver of growth in the category. Consumers are not limited to their local store and can seek out specific products with numerous online retailers.” – Dave Macdonald, vice president of sales for ProAmpac.
Read the companion article, "Sustainability remains top trend in pet food packaging,” published in the September 2021 issue of Petfood Industry magazine.