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Martijn Pabon, Snow Donuts:

“Packaging is the publicity booster that can make the difference”

The cultivation of vegetables is getting more and more efficient, and because of this more products reach the market. Then how can you as a grower make your product stand out amongst the competitors? Quality is important, of course, but it doesn't always do the trick, as Martijn Pabon of Snow Donuts Designs knows. “Growers like to say that they produce efficient and sustainable products, and it's not uncommon for growers to advertise. This doesn’t distinguish your product anymore. A daring marketing strategy or a notable packaging design, however, can. Everyone is doing something unique these days, and it is a challenge to translate this to the packaging.”


The designer sees beautiful new products coming from the Caballero Fabriek in The Hague on a daily basis, but at the same time growers have trouble distinguishing their products when taking them to market. “On the outside, you can hardly see that one tomato is of better quality than another one. The consumer takes between one and eight seconds to choose a product. In this period the product needs to stand out. A physical packaging can help with this, but what is also needed is communication in the form of design, text, image or even logo. We see these elements as a chance to create an even stronger brand. Whether it concerns strategy, branding or packaging, the overall image needs to fit in with the image of the product.”

The product remains the focus point
During the communication, it is important to keep in mind who the recipient of the message is. “Many products are transported from the Netherlands to other countries and end up in stores there. This is also something to take into account, because what products will end up being next to yours on the shelf? What is your product's position on the shelf, is it displayed high up or down low? All of this matters.”

According to Martijn, the packaging needs to fit with the product as best as it can. “If this is not the case, the on-pack communication can have the opposite effect. A bulk product, for example, demands a different type of packaging than more of a niche product. The packaging needs to be an extension of the product, so to say. So with bulk products, where you get a lot of goods for a reasonable price, a very excessive packaging does not fit with the product's intent.”

The designers develop the design of the packaging, but the production of the packaging happens at the suppliers. The designers are involved with the changes and innovations in the packaging stage these days. “When it comes to packaging, the consumer often thinks of something that is bad for the environment and which is only meant to be thrown away. However, the packaging is needed most of the time even if only to improve shelf-life. Such a message can be shown on the pack, but with this, it is important not to say too much, which is a thing most people tend to do, but often distracts from the product itself which should never be the intent.”

From brand positioning to design launches
Snow Donuts is definitely not new in the sector, but the design agency did undergo a name change two years ago. Bloom Packaging, as they used to be called, has worked with a variety of designers since 2002. “Koppert Cress, Looye, FloraHolland, Simon Levelt, Purple Pride, Van Nature, Rainbow Growers are just a few of the companies that we are working or have worked with. Sometimes this is for a physical packaging, but we have also worked on developing a complete brand identity from brand exposure, identity, packaging to campaigns and promotions. After all, all of these factors need to fit together.”

The packaging needs to fit with the product but the product still needs to be of good quality, says Martijn. “Repeated purchases are not due to the packaging but due to the quality of the product. We help with the initial purchase, the first contact between the product and the consumer.”

For more information:
Snow Donuts
Caballero Fabriek
Saturnusstraat 60, Unit 25
2516 AH, Den Haag
+31 (0)70 38 37 103 

Martijn Pabon
+31(0)6 51 10 56 69

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