In the packaging industry, we tend to think of closures as the finishing touch on a package. For consumers, the closure is one of the first interactions they have with the package—making it more of an “opener”, in both senses of the word. Packaging solutions which make strategic use of convenient closure features that customers love will help your brand stand out on retail shelves and drive repeat purchases.
Consumers are busy. For many people, traditional snack foods (or foods packaged like a snack) now replace one or more meals per day. These snacks are usually eaten on the go and outside the home—on the way to work, at an office desk, or en route to the gym. If you’ve ever eaten in your car, you know that the wrong packaging can place your eating experience somewhere between inconvenient and perilous.
For the ultra-busy (or for those concerned with portion control), resealable closures are a must. Consider the office worker who keeps a bag of trail mix in her desk for days she’s too busy to get lunch or feels those 3pm hunger pangs. Without a reliable and effective resealable closure, she’ll transfer the contents of her bag of trail mix to another non-branded container—meaning the trail mix manufacturer is losing out on an opportunity for continued brand engagement.
At Emmerson Packaging, we most commonly manufacture resealable packaging solutions with these three closing features:
- Top slider
Packaging Solution: Press-to-Close
Press-to-close has been among the most popular closing features since The Dow Chemical Company brought the Ziploc bag’s predecessor to test markets in 1968. It’s familiar to consumers, easy to use, and helps preserve the freshness of the product and protect it from environmental contaminants.
Using a press-to-close feature can increase original package retention, boost consumer confidence, and protect against spills. We’ve found that press-to-close features with increased tactile feedback perform best with consumers—they’re more likely to think this kind of closure is effective at protecting their snack purchase and enjoy increased confidence in the packaging.
There are several press-to-close options available to food manufacturers. One example is the Inno-Lok® closure, a type of press-to-close feature made more economical and efficient by its design. According to The Hudson-Sharp Machine Company—inventors of Inno-Lok®—this type of resealable packaging solution can result in up to 50% savings in zipper materials, up to 15% savings in packaging materials, and up to 20% savings in lost scrap.
The Inno-Lok® closure is a transverse pre-zippered rollstock solution, and is easy to open and close on any traditional pillow package (although it has other applications as well). It can be any length, and its length is generally determined by the width of the product rather than the width of the package. Usually, no or minimal special machinery is required to produce Inno-Lok® packaging, making it even more attractive to the cost-conscious producer.
Packaging Solution: Hook-to-Hook
Hook-to-hook closures (most commonly known to consumers as Velcro® closures, although we use several different hook-to-hook closure brands) are a consumer favourite because they’re familiar and extremely easy to use. Unlike, for example, a press-to-close feature, hook-to-hook doesn’t require perfect alignment of the two sides of the closure to achieve a good seal.
Packaging Solution: Top Slider
Top slider closing features are a favourite for consumers with limited dexterity, and give the greatest impression of freshness protection. They also offer greater convenience for larger format packages, where press-to-close might be insufficient to get an acceptable seal due to either the width or the weight of the package and its contents. To be completely certain that your consumer will use your original branded packaging throughout the life of the product, top slider closing features are an excellent choice.
Packaging Solutions for Snacks and More
Whatever you’re selling, resealable closing features are one of the best ways to attract new customers and keep old ones coming back for more. Consumers are almost always willing to pay a premium for added perceived value—meaning ease of use, convenience, and improved product life can easily command a higher asking price.
Want to learn more about packaging features that consumers love (and will open their wallets for)? Click here to download What Consumers Want From Sustainable Packaging: Insights and Trends for the Frozen Food Industry.