José Navarro and Michael Stephan, designers and partners of PackCo·Brand&Packaging, develop projects tailored to the needs of each client and product. The company has a boutique on the outskirts of the Spanish city of Valencia, and despite their brief business career, they already hold contacts with countries such as Germany, France, Switzerland, Italy, South America, and cities such as New York and Cape Town.
The lives of Jose Navarro, founder of Packaging Consulting in 2013, and Michael Stephan, co-founder of the current firm PackCo·B&P, crossed while working at the SanLucar Fruit company, in which Michael had developed his career and a prestigious brand for 13 years, while Jose run the packaging department for five years.
The success of his project, according to Navarro, is due to the fact that “our technical advice to clients has allowed us to stand out and to obtain profits practically since the launch of our business project. I think that one of our main assets, and the reason why we are gaining the trust of our clients, has been our technical and managerial capability in the production of our designs or projects, without leaving aside our creative capacity.”
PackCo·B&P carries out turnkey projects. "If the client wants it, we work with our network of specific suppliers for each job, all approved and validated by PackCo, to ensure the quality of the packaging in terms of product protection, food safety and finishing."
As a design consultant, one of its main markets is the fruit and vegetable sector. In October, it will participate in Fruit Attraction 2019 in order to advertise its services and capabilities among the main players in the sector. "The main needs of fruit and vegetable producers today in the field of packaging are automation and sustainability. Currently, the best options for automatic packaging are developed for poorly compostable materials, and the few that exist or work are usually at least three times more expensive. At PackCo, we are trying to inform our customers about the need to work with sustainable materials and solutions."
The greatest challenge in the packaging of fresh products “is achieving a mix between a natural and sustainable appearance and a 'premium' impact. In our solutions, PackCo always tries to use the most suitable materials for each project, taking sustainability into account and always choosing the most efficient solutions in this area. For example, by using 100% recycled RPET. We are also working hand in hand with Papelera Mediterráneo in the making of compositions with recycled cardboard or with Graspapier, avoiding virgin cellulose fiber and solutions with compostable plastics or alternatives to them,” said the founders.
As regards packaging design trends on a global scale, “for fresh products, such as fruit and vegetables, it is generally essential for them to be visible; to allow the consumer to check the product's freshness and its degree of ripeness. It is also important for those products not to be marked or stained, and that they are well protected until the moment of consumption. This characteristic is already a big requirement that will mark the aesthetics of the container, since it has to be solved in one way or another,” said Stephan.