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  • 08 May 2019

Blockchain important to the future of food and drink packaging

Blockchain important to the future of food and drink packaging

Blockchain is a viable tool to make labeling data more robust, information transparency more accessible and, ultimately, empower consumers about their purchasing decisions, according to new research.

In partnership with Avery Dennison, The Future Laboratory has begun authoring a new monthly column providing insights on global drivers, macro and micro trends, and their impact on consumers, brands, and the label and packaging industry. The first article has now been published, which considers blockchain as a way to make labeling data more robust, information transparency more accessible and to empower consumers about their purchasing decisions. 

‘Product labels have many functions – to be eye-catching and attract attention on the shelf is one, but perhaps the most important function is to inform consumers,’ noted researchers at The Future Laboratory. ‘And yet in recent years, the data on labels has left many wanting. Almost half (48 percent) of consumers feel that they do not know enough about a product despite reading the label.’

The Future Laboratory identifies blockchain, as a distributed digital ledger, as offering transparency beyond the label. Unlike other digital databases, a blockchain entry cannot be changed once it is logged, giving it a high-trust value, noted researchers at The Future Laboratory. Moreover, blockchain-enabled products offer designers a chance to create engaging, immersive packaging that encourages customers to delve beyond the label and into a brand new world of transparency.

Amy White, vice president, communications and brand, Avery Dennison, said: ‘When combined with emerging technologies, a product’s labeling can empower consumers about their purchase decisions, offering new levels of transparency.

‘As material science and technology pioneers ​being up to date on these insights is essential​.’

The column can be read via the M_use digital platform. Avery Dennison introduced M_use to inspire innovative design for label and packaging designers and converters. M_use, short for ‘materials in use’, is a community where users can find inspiration as they experience the attributes of a label application – from technical to tactile – as well as discover more about the science behind the design.

‘M_use combines inspirational design content with the materials science expertise of Avery Dennison. It’s an easy-to-use interface that shows the magic of materials in use,’ said Angus McGuffin, global creative director at Avery Dennison.

In a joint statement, Martin Raymond and Christopher Sanderson, co-founders, The Future Laboratory, commented: ‘As futurenauts, forecasters and analysts of tomorrow, we seek out those places, portals, people, and processes that allow us a glimpse at what could be when designers, scientists, packing creatives, and material specialists mix and merge talent with insight, the obvious, with the counterintuitive. The team behind M_use, one of those platforms that we visit regularly, and Avery Dennison, sit within this category and culture.’


The Labels & Labeling global editorial team covers every corner of the world from Europe and the Americas, to India, Asia, Southeast Asia and Australasia with all the latest news from the label and package printing market.

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