Roman Forowycz, chief marketing officer at Clear Lam Packaging, Elk Grove Village, Ill., noticed late last year the beginning of an increase in retail-ready packaging.
â€œProcessors and retailers are moving toward retail-ready cases to simplify the shelf restocking process and reduce costs,â€ Forowycz said in an e-mail. â€œWhen developing new packaging, designers are now taking into account how the primary package will sit in a retail-ready case. More smooth rectangles and squares are being used to try to eliminate empty dead space caused from round or oval containers.â€
CrunchPak, Taylor Farms and Pro2Snax are a few that have recently had retail-ready displays on shelves in Wal-Mart produce departments.
In addition to making life a bit easier for retailers, retail-ready packaging also lends itself to branding. Steve Lutz, vice president of marketing, Columbia Marketing International, Wenatchee, Wash., said two-box and five-box apple shippers give retailers an easy setup and built-in advertisement.
â€œAll the retailer has to do is to take the display out on the show floor and pop it up, so within a minute or two theyâ€™ve popped open this display and set it up and they have an instant selling display that creates a billboard for the product at the shelf level,â€ Lutz said. â€œThose are extremely powerful selling devices, calling attention to unique products that are out of the mainstream for consumers.
â€œThe challenge is that oftentimes we run into sort of the mainstream retailers that have what they like to call â€˜clean floor initiatives,â€™ and in those clean floor initiatives they really discourage secondary off-shelf displays,â€ Lutz said. â€œ...We know they work and we know when we get them used in-store it really boosts sales, but there are also individual chains that have policies that make implementation difficult, so thatâ€™s the only challenge to those instant displays.â€
Sam Monte, director of operations at Riverside, Mich.-based Monte Packaging, said his company has seen the retail-ready trend as well. He views it as an extension of the growing emphasis on convenience.
â€œWeâ€™ve seen that a lot, whether itâ€™s display-ready boxes or we talk a lot about the grab-and-go pouch bag,â€ Monte said. â€œAnything thatâ€™s convenient for a consumer at a retail level has become more and more popular.â€