Do the package designs of organic products differ from those of conventional products and which package design elements are used more systematically in organic products? This paper aims to address this question by exploring the package design elements of organic products. The proposition is that in addition to package design elements that explicitly communicate and position a product as organic (i.e. organic labels and claims), other package design elements that implicitly convey an organic image are used.
The authors conduct a content analysis of the package designs from new product launches in four product categories (butter, cereals, fruit juice and milk) and across four markets (Austria, Denmark, Sweden and Switzerland).
The results show that the package designs of organic products differ from those of conventional products based on the presence of more paper material, white and green colours and images displaying nature.
The findings support the notion that in addition to organic labels and claims, package design elements that implicitly communicate values associated with organic products, such as environmental friendliness and sustainability are used.
This study is among the few to explore package design elements for organic products. Understanding how the package designs of organic products are constructed can support managerial decisions on the use of the package as a means to better communicate and position organic products.
The authors wish to thank Diana Todorova and Aleksandra Georgieva for their assistance in the coding. The authors further want to thank Mintel Global New Product Database (www.mintel.com) for allowing the authors access to their database and giving their copyright permission to use the images in Figure 1.
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