Keeping Fido’s Favorites on the Shelves

How PrintFlex Graphics Re-engineered Experiences from Production to Point of Purchase.

OUR CUSTOMER
With over 300 million pets currently in American homes, the pet care industry is big business and continues to grow. The APPA estimates that U.S. households are on target to spend $99 billion in 2020 on total pet expenditures, with a projected $38.4 billion on pet food and treats alone. So when our client, a major player in the pet care industry, was experiencing promotional packaging malfunctions that could jeopardize their placement within a national chain of members-only retail warehouse clubs, our team was there to re-engineer the promotional design that enhanced the entire experience.

THE CHALLENGE
Our client had been successfully selling two types of dog treats together as a special promotion dual pack at retail warehouse clubs throughout the United States. To deliver the “bulk” volume that members of such clubs expect, our client provided their normal single pouch packages as dual packs, two single bags adhered together with a single handle. This saddlebag style design made it convenient for the retailer and the customer. That is, until the single pouch packaging received a redesign and the exterior lacquer was changed. The lacquer on the new pouch design was resistant to the original handle adhesive used to create the co-packaged bundle. The handles were no longer secure. They were completely detaching from the bags, leaving a mess in the aisles and potentially jeopardizing our client’s shelf position with the national retailer.

To maintain this important sales channel, our client was faced with the challenge of identifying an adhesive that met their packaging requirements while holding the two treat bags securely. Luckily, having worked together for 25 years, our customer’s research and development packaging engineer knew that our dedicated team could react more nimbly and efficiently than other suppliers in order to get their dual treat bags back on the shelves.

OUR SOLUTION

PrintFlex Graphics’ technical and design team, Seal Team 6, came together to identify and source adhesives that would meet our customer’s packaging requirements. The team then performed a multitude of tests on the adhesives to determine how each interacted with the new pouches and narrowed the selection to those that did not break or rip off of the packaging. Our team verified that the successful adhesive could hold the weight of two treat bags by testing the amount of force required to remove the handle. We found that the adhesive wasn’t the only sticking point in keeping the dual pouch promotion on warehouse shelves during our research and development of the new handles. Our client previously produced the handle design on single sheets requiring multiple steps for removal and application. This process was cumbersome and time-consuming, making it challenging to meet the retailer’s skid requirements.

Our team was confident there was a way to improve this promotion’s experience from production to purchase. So, we re-engineered the construction of the handle. By implementing a unique die-cut that allowed the polyester liner to become part of the handle itself, our team produced the handles and applied the adhesive as a continuous process on rolls instead of on individual sheets. During production, promotional messaging and barcodes were printed onto the handles as well. This process streamlined the production of the handles and presented a more efficient application process for our client’s copacker. The easy to find barcode made the point of sale experience efficient for the employee and consumer.

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