— Packaging Blog | Paczone

Small-sized packaging has become trendy in the confectionery and snacks market. Euromonitor International predicts that by 2020, the global growth of chocolate candies sales will be those with small packages below 50g. Such smaller-size trends have also accelerated the development of flexible food packaging.

Small Packages Catch On

More and more confectionery and snack manufacturers have launched small, single-serve products to meet consumer needs. For example, last year, Nestlé launched a KitKat chocolate product in Vietnam with a soft plastic packaging of only 17g; Mondelez launched Mini Oreos in Malaysia, each weighing only 38 grams; Migros’ Blévita Biscuits Müesli mini, only 38 grams per bag.

In April 2017, a Euromonitor International report on packaging pointed out that the total demand for retail packaging in 2016 reached 3.4 trillion pieces. Majority of them are food packaging and this figure continue to expand with the increase in the demand for small packages.  Convenience, affordability, health needs and high-end products are the main driving forces behind.

(1) Convenience

The report shows that in 2016, the demand for packaging in the Asia-Pacific region accounted for 42% of the global total, and is expected to further grow to 63% by 2020. The report also pointed out that, the accelerating pace of life has also led to the increase in demand for portable snacks. Snack products that can be enjoyed all day long, have high added value, and can be re-sealed will become more and more popular.

(2) Health Needs

Nowadays, people are paying more and more attention to health. They’re trying to curb their impulsion of candy consumption. For impulsive consumption, compared to traditional chocolate bars, single-serve small-package biscuits give consumers more choices and can prompt consumers to give up chocolate bars and choose biscuits instead.

The trend of small package has also extended to ice cream products. Among ice cream purchased on impulse, 80ml is the most common packaging size. The report stated that packaging ice cream with a size of 50ml and below will be the most promising, with a compound growth rate of 7% from 2016 to 2020.

(3) Added Value

Manufacturers are also beginning to increase the added value by improving convenience, making them suitable for more consumption scenarios such as travel and work. For example, Hershey has launched Chocotubs in plastic cups in Brazil, which is convenient for sharing and consumption among multiple people.

Hershey's Chocotubs Small Packages

Boost in Flexible Plastic Packaging

One of the highlights of the food industry in 2015 was the growth of snacks. This has also stimulated the growth of demand for snack packaging. Among them, flexible packaging is widely used in snacks such as toffee, caramel, nougat and sweet biscuits. Some thin plastic containers used for sweet or savory snacks, and plastic bag packaging widely used for soft candy, jelly, chewing gum and other products will also gain a certain growth, although the current packaging market for these products is not particularly large.

In short, the change of packaging size has increased the diversification of products, which can better meet consumers’ needs for healthy consumption of food and soft drinks. It is suitable for a wider range of consumption occasions and is also a brand optimization plan.

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In order to help newbies better understand the popular trends and professional criterion of packaging design in China, we conducted a field survey at a large supermarket, Inzone Mall in Jinan, China.
There are a wide variety of goods on the supermarket shelves. Different product packaging has its own advantages in packaging materials, packaging structure, and packaging design. Packaging conveys a variety of information is a bridge between consumers and commodities. A good packaging can quickly identify which manufacturer and brand it comes from. Therefore, for manufacturers and sellers, how to clearly distinguish their product brand, corporate image & culture from other similar products becomes more and more important. We found that most product packaging uses concise but impactful visual language to attract consumers’ attention. As long as the external shape and advertisement of the package are enough to attract people’s attention, then some consumers will buy it, even though they did not put it into the shopping list.

Throughout the whole process of a product from production to sales, the functional requirements of packaging are diverse: easy to transport and load, suitable for storage and transportation, easy to carry and use, easy to display and sales, and easy to recycle. Specifically, the function of packaging is not only to protect the product from damage during transits before sale, but also to ensure that it’s convenient for consumers to use and carry after sale. The packaging box design should be concise and clear, so as to be easily recognized memorized. The design style is both highly targeted and widely applicable, easy to communicate, and approachable.

Packaging materials are also diverse, including plastic packaging, glass packaging, metal packaging and paper packaging:

Plastic Packaging

Merits: bright and eye-catching, lively pictures, dynamic, easy to carry.

Plastic packaging has many inherent advantages, such as moisture-proof, vacuum-able, low cost, easy to store, etc. And because most plastic films are smooth and shiny, color printed packaging made of plastic is brighter and more gorgeous than paper packaging.


The packaging design of Dove chocolate is mainly based on warm colors. The brown ribbon surrounds the LOGO, which echoes its slogan and intuitively expresses the chocolate characteristics. The Dove packaging design is mainly based on realistic product images in graphics, giving consumers a sense of trust and beauty. Use the classic coffee color as the keynote tone, supported with different colors according to product category to create a warm feeling. The fonts adopt curve-based design which is more likely to be loved by young people.


Transparent design is also common with plastic packaging. It highlights the product itself, makes consumers clear at a glance, and can more visually tempt consumers and increase their desire to buy. Also available are some novelty plastic candy boxes

Glass packaging

Merits: Glass containers are transparent, easy to clean, environmentally friendly, non-toxic and tasteless. Moreover, they can be well adapted to both high temperature sterilization and low temperature storage environments. Glass has good chemical stability, does not pollute the contents, has excellent storage performance, wonderful shapes, can be recycled and re-used, and has abundant raw materials, etc.

Typical glass packaging includes wine and beverage bottles. Major breakthrough in wine packaging materials has been achieved nowadays, like plastic bottles, metal cans, paper wine containers, etc. All kinds of wine bottles have their own unique advantages, but superiority of the bottle is never swayed.


The glass beverage packaging that impressed us most is the curved Coke bottle, which has been used to this day. But due to transportation issues, glass packaging has gradually been replaced by plastic and cardboard. However, glass bottles have begun to gain popularity among high-end beverage manufacturers, like RIO cocktail. The packaging design of RIO is simple, refreshing and full of texture. The bottles are made of frosted glass, which increases friction and prevents slipping. Besides, translucence gives the content inside a sense of mystery and strong visual impact. RIO cocktails use rich colors as the theme, each flavor has its own color, highlighting youth and vitality, and is loved by young consumers.

Metal packaging

Merits: Metal has the characteristics of firmness, compression resistance, no breakage, airtightness, moisture resistance and ductility.

With the development of metal processing and printing technology, metal packaging design has become more and more beautiful. The shapes and colors of metal packaging continue to be novel in design to cater to consumers’ psychological needs and expand consumer groups. After the metal packaging surface is decorated, it not only makes the packaging more beautiful, but also greatly improves the value of the metal packaging itself, improves the durability and maintainability of the product, and can better reflect the unity of the use value and artistry of the product.


The metal packaging in the picture is uneven, has a strong three-dimensional effect. Coca-Cola uses a bright red background, with white words printed, which is very eye-catching. The white characters, in contrast to the red background, have a natural sense of vigor. While the typeface follows a graceful and continuous streamline, as the liquid flow of coke would suggest. Fully reflects the characteristics of the liquid. This classic Coke packaging has impressed and been loved by the masses.


Paper packaging

Merits: flexible, lightweight, recyclable and degradable.

With the increasing environment awareness, green packaging is advocated and championed worldwide. Paper material is harmless to the environment and human health. Orion Potato Chips are packaged in a unique eight-sided cardboard box with bright color and unique design. It meets people’s demand for novelty and fashion. The packaging includes two small packets inside, which aims to avoid damping after opening.


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