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Development of New Easy to Open Cheese Packaging for Elderly in Sweden - A Design Thinking Approach

Chenderasa, Santika Karunika LU (2016) MTTM01 20161
Packaging Logistics
Abstract
Changing demographics in most of western society bring a range of new demands in the field of food and more specifically in food packaging. The need for convenience is one of the biggest drivers behind many innovations over the past decades. Current trends involve psychological convenience on environmental aspects, as well as ease of opening. Easy to open packaging is desirable because consumers want hassle-free access to the product.
Cheese can be considered as a staple in the Swedish market. A consumer study conducted as part of this project shows the difficulties elderly people have in opening of current packaging of cheese products. That highlights the need to develop a new innovative and convenient packaging solution for cheese... (More)
Changing demographics in most of western society bring a range of new demands in the field of food and more specifically in food packaging. The need for convenience is one of the biggest drivers behind many innovations over the past decades. Current trends involve psychological convenience on environmental aspects, as well as ease of opening. Easy to open packaging is desirable because consumers want hassle-free access to the product.
Cheese can be considered as a staple in the Swedish market. A consumer study conducted as part of this project shows the difficulties elderly people have in opening of current packaging of cheese products. That highlights the need to develop a new innovative and convenient packaging solution for cheese products.
The new packaging solution is a modification of current cheese packaging, by integrating PopPack® technology. This technology involves a bubble compartment in the packaging that will break the seal as it is popped, providing the tabs that consumer can hold as a grip while opening the package.
The nature of this study is an exploratory phase of a development project with use of design thinking approach. Design thinking makes human aspects as its main focus, makes it suitable for this project in order to base its early stage on the consumer needs.
Investigations carried out to learn the impact that different bubble shapes have on the performance of the solution. The results of this work suggest the best performing bubble shape (among the tested three, which are generated from the ideation session) along with the best top/bottom web materials combination. Also some assessment of the compatibility of design thinking approach in such project. (Less)
Popular Abstract
PopPack(R) technology has potential to solve the current problem of block cheese packaging that is hard to open. This novel technology involves the addition of a bubble compartment into the packaging. The bubble is to be popped (as reflected in its name, PopPack(R)) and breaks the seal around it as it burst, providing a larger, separated tabs to grip on during opening. Bubble shapes play a crucial part here, but as testing were carried out, the rounder, the better.
Not only was the technology, the approach also new in this project. One may argue on this because design thinking was not just introduced yesterday. But in a food packaging development project, this study is among the firsts to use this approach. The nature of the project was... (More)
PopPack(R) technology has potential to solve the current problem of block cheese packaging that is hard to open. This novel technology involves the addition of a bubble compartment into the packaging. The bubble is to be popped (as reflected in its name, PopPack(R)) and breaks the seal around it as it burst, providing a larger, separated tabs to grip on during opening. Bubble shapes play a crucial part here, but as testing were carried out, the rounder, the better.
Not only was the technology, the approach also new in this project. One may argue on this because design thinking was not just introduced yesterday. But in a food packaging development project, this study is among the firsts to use this approach. The nature of the project was still in exploratory phase, giving the team a wide flexibility in terms of which aspect to be focused on. The lead researcher decided to start from the consumer and do a human-centered project which is the base of design thinking. And as a result, the team has now hauled the desires and experience of consumers related to cheese packaging, meaning that there are a lot of different ways opened for this project to move forward.
This project has been a learning for both company and the researcher, for both the technology and the methodology. To frame the study, one design thinking process was selected. It is the one introduced by Hasso-Plattner-Institut School of Design Thinking, which adopted the process suggested by d.school: Institute of Design at Stanford. This process consists of six stages, namely understand, observe, ideate, prototype, and test. To be kept in mind, this project is iterative, meaning the team has possibilities to jump from one stage to another, either back- or forward.
During the ideation session, it was decided that this project will be testing different bubble shapes, with a suspect that the shape will matter. And it does, as the prototypes said. Through the scoring test with fifteen respondents on three different bubble shapes, it was proven that bubble shape impacts on the popping sound, aesthetic appearance, and intuitive opening. Popping test was carried out, where 20 of each bubble shape was popped, and bubble with some shapes were failed to burst the seal when it was popped. Different bubble shape apparently also gives different results when the measurements of forces needed to pop and peel were taken.
Performing the best in all of the tests, the bubble that was decided as the best one was the one closest to a circle-shape. This bubble was then improved to give better impact on bursting the seal through the popping. Prototype with improved bubble was shown to the cheese manufacturer (Arla Foods Denmark) who gave a lot of valuable feedback for the continuation of this project.
As mentioned in the title of this article, this study focused on elderly people in Sweden. Ageing population is a common problem shared by western countries, and the baby boomers (born post World War II until 1960s) are now serving a big chunk of the market, whilst being around 50 years old or older now. Making something that actually works for them will be a good move, also with the assumption that they have some physical limitations that will ensure when a packaging is easy to open for them; it will be easy to open for others too. So don’t worry, everyone can all have fun with bubble in the cheese packaging! (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
Chenderasa, Santika Karunika LU
supervisor
organization
course
MTTM01 20161
year
type
H2 - Master's Degree (Two Years)
subject
keywords
cheese packaging, food packaging development, packaging design, plastic packaging, design thinking
ISBN
978-91-7623-888-2
language
English
id
8884318
date added to LUP
2016-06-22 13:14:03
date last changed
2016-06-23 08:43:04
@misc{8884318,
  abstract     = {Changing demographics in most of western society bring a range of new demands in the field of food and more specifically in food packaging. The need for convenience is one of the biggest drivers behind many innovations over the past decades. Current trends involve psychological convenience on environmental aspects, as well as ease of opening. Easy to open packaging is desirable because consumers want hassle-free access to the product. 
Cheese can be considered as a staple in the Swedish market. A consumer study conducted as part of this project shows the difficulties elderly people have in opening of current packaging of cheese products. That highlights the need to develop a new innovative and convenient packaging solution for cheese products.
The new packaging solution is a modification of current cheese packaging, by integrating PopPack® technology. This technology involves a bubble compartment in the packaging that will break the seal as it is popped, providing the tabs that consumer can hold as a grip while opening the package.
The nature of this study is an exploratory phase of a development project with use of design thinking approach. Design thinking makes human aspects as its main focus, makes it suitable for this project in order to base its early stage on the consumer needs.
Investigations carried out to learn the impact that different bubble shapes have on the performance of the solution. The results of this work suggest the best performing bubble shape (among the tested three, which are generated from the ideation session) along with the best top/bottom web materials combination. Also some assessment of the compatibility of design thinking approach in such project.},
  author       = {Chenderasa, Santika Karunika},
  isbn         = {978-91-7623-888-2},
  keyword      = {cheese packaging,food packaging development,packaging design,plastic packaging,design thinking},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Development of New Easy to Open Cheese Packaging for Elderly in Sweden - A Design Thinking Approach},
  year         = {2016},
}