How to Adjust Packaging in Response to Rising Food Prices

Inflation is front and center these days, and consumers are feeling the economic pressure on their wallets. With their tighter budgets and need to make their dollars work harder, people are cutting corners wherever they can, including at the grocery store. As a brand, how can you package your products to align with the more meticulous budget practice of customers? Let’s take a look at 3 ways you can adjust your packaging in response to rising food prices.


Think Bulk

It’s no consumer secret that buying in bulk typically means a lower per unit cost. Have you thought about bunching your products together and offering a package deal? Or increasing the size of your products and offering a more bulk-friendly rate?

In this current price sensitive environment, presenting a higher cumulative price may seem like a risky move. However, with the right messaging, emphasizing the per unit cost and consequent savings to the customer, consumers will understand they’re getting a deal and hopefully choose your product. In this scenario, you’ll have decreased packaging costs, higher margins and increased sales.

Seems like a win-win.

Bring Attention to Time

One popular food approach in the past few years has been meal prep. As opposed to cooking every night throughout the week, some people prefer to cook on the weekend and partition their meals pre-made for weekday consumption.

Why do people do this? There are health reasons, but also, time is a more important currency than money. People would rather save time throughout the week eating simpler and repeat food than dedicating time in the kitchen every night.

In times of inflation, shining a spotlight on your food’s ease of preparation is two-fold. Firstly, foods for meal prep are often simple and therefore more cost-effective. Secondly, more time equals more freedom, and in times of financial constraint, freedom can seem threatened. For those that don’t want to spend time in the kitchen, their time is now available for family, friends, leisure, or another work opportunity.

So, if your product is something that’s simple and quick to prepare, consider saying so on the packaging.

Further Emphasize the Unique

What is it about your packaged good that makes it stand out? Does it have exceptional ingredients? Is it vegan? Is it high in protein and ideal for athletes? Is it super healthy?  

At the end of the day, your product is your product, and whatever sets it apart should set it apart in all market conditions.

Therefore, double down on emphasizing the unique identifiers of your product. If it fits a particular niche, make sure its packaging boldly or beautifully jumps out to that target audience. Even amidst rising prices, your core consumer will have the best chance of reaching for your product if they see it and understand what makes it special.

Opportunity at Every Turn

Inflation is a test for producer and consumer alike. While customers do their best to navigate their budgets and purchasing options, you have an opportunity to grow in brand identity, ingenuity, and resilience. Adjusting your packaging amidst rising prices just may be the pivot point your company needs to excel in these challenging market conditions.

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