PackTalk is a blog for the Healthcare Packaging Industry

Scary Good Packaging

Published on October 28, 2022

In honor of Halloween week, which is admittedly one of my very favorite holidays, we thought it would be fun to take a detour from our more serious content and shift our focus to an article we’re calling: Scary Good Packaging.

Insert evil laugh.

The marketing team recently got together for our annual meeting. As a part of this meeting, we made some time for a packaging-themed team building event, which was modeled after the TV show, Supermarket Sweep. We split the group into teams of four, and each team was given $20. We went to the local grocery store (shoutout to George’s Market in Dresher, PA), and were asked to find one item representing the following categories—all within 15 minutes:

  1. Most Innovative Package: an inventive package unlike any other in the store. 

  2. MOST Efficient Protection: package that protects its item the best at a low cost. 

  3. LEAST Efficient Protection: package that poorly protects its item or is wasteful. 

  4. Best Storytelling: package that tells the best story of the brand. 

The clock was set, our running shoes were laced, and the gauntlet was thrown. After some friendly smack talk and with bragging rights on the line, the team raced through the store. After a home-cooked meal together, we began part two of the challenge—the pitch, where we had to “sell” our products to our esteemed judges.

Here are the winners of our Scary Good Packaging contest:

Most Innovative Package

Chosen for: the dramatic sales pitch, and the superior “unboxing” experience—joy took a functional item and added a little excitement with a bright and colorful design and an Apple iPhone-like packaging experience.


Most Efficient Protection

Chosen for: it’s simplicity and self-contained protection. There’s no packaging needed, the “waste” is biodegradable, and the rind can even be used to hold your favorite cocktail.

Organic Mini Red Seedless Watermelons — Melissas Produce

Least Efficient Protection

Chosen for: the frustrated (and hysterical) sales pitch. While I’d like to say that no bread product was harmed during this sales pitch, I cannot lie. Our fiery marketer threw down this loaf of bread in passionate outrage to showcase its ineffective and fragile packaging.

bread packaging


Best Brand Story: TIE

Chosen for: a tried and true brand that parents and pediatricians around the world have trusted for years; versus the hysterical “testimonial” printed right on the catnip packaging. Two brand stories, told in very different ways.  

pampers packaging





catnip packaging

This little exercise is just one example of something packaging engineers already know—that great ideas can come from virtually everywhere! For me, I have never looked more closely at packaging than I do today, considering things like ease of use and environmental impact. I appreciate the use of color and storytelling and consider design features like resealable packaging and multi-use functionality (i.e., baby wipes, which I can throw in a bag, or the car, or a suitcase to wipe up a spill/wash my hands on the go/wipe down a plane seat, etc.).

Congratulations to our winners. Your products, and your passionate pitches, proved just how Scary Good packaging can be.

Katie Scharff
Director, Marketing Communications | Oliver Healthcare Packaging

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