It is always beneficial to keep track of trends in various industries as a way to plan for the future. At Opportunities Inc. we posted a blog regarding the projected growth of contract packaging in August 2016, as well as the main factors driving that growth. The main trend for growth was sustainability in packaging products. So what does 2017 look like taking this into account? Will the growth factors be similar? Is sustainability still key?

As we get further into 2017 and closer to spring, we decided to take a look at some of the trends that we have already seen and what else can be expected throughout the year for the packaging industry. We compiled information from a variety of blogs to share 2017 design trends locally and globally for the packaging industry.

Design has a great list of trends to expect throughout 2017 for packaging design. Let’s take a look at their list and go over some ways to incorporate them into your products!
Be simple, bold and clear

“Stick to the essentials and make sure they help the buyer make a more informed decision; a clean-cut design can convey information and make a product shine using simplicity.”

Embrace custom lettering

More emphasis on hand-written lettering. Something that makes the customer feel some sort of connection to the product. Lettering that can separate your design from the digital standard text.

Go wild with color

As the title says, go wild! If you’re not sure what colors to choose, take a look back at our packaging color blog. There you’ll find out what colors to choose to ensure your product packaging lines up with your company’s values.

Repeat a pattern

“Although the idea of repetitive shapes might seem simple, the technique can be dynamic and compelling when used correctly.” -99

Use illustration as narrative

Let the imagery on your package tell a story about your brand or your product.

Imagine ingenious die cut

“Creating a window in your packaging can show the product in a meaningful or clever way, making a buyer stop and take notice.”

Find vintage inspiration

Create nostalgia

Explore eco-friendly packaging

Similar to 2016, sustainability will continue to push packaging growth!

Put in mail

Growth in e-commerce sites and stores means packaging designs need to be mailable. Make sure your packaging design stands out when consumers’ open it at home!

Global came up with a great list of trends that are expected to be seen throughout the global packaging industry. Some of these trends are seen through the packaging design itself, and have already been mentioned. 
Global Trends Key trends for 2017 to be on the lookout for:
    -The [Re] Union of Package Structure and Branding
    -The Face and Role of Packaging Online
    -Packaging Gets Smart, Active and Intelligent
    -The Experience of Packaging
    -Extend My Brand

As you can see online packaging is going to be an absolute force in 2017. We are going to see more company’s shying away from multiple brick and mortar stores. Billing and shipping information will continue shifting to online systems. Packaging will also see more quoting and ordering online as well.

United States and have a great list of trends that are expected to be seen in the US. As mentioned earlier, some of these may be repeats from design and global trends. Again, pay close attention to these in 2017.


The highlighted the following trends:

    - Focus on digital printing and interactive, intelligent packaging technologies
    -Further growth in flexible packaging
    -Increased demand for graphic design and pre-press talent to implement new nutrition facts panel
    -More focus on food safety, reductions of food waste and sustainability in packaging
    -Increased demand for standardized packaging containers to accommodate shipping in e-commerce noted the following trends:

    -Establishing a “one size fits all” e-commerce model
    -Prioritizing food safety and the reduction of food waste with new packaging technologies and processes
    -Commercialization of packaging innovations
    -Holistic packaging becoming the “new normal”

A major push for sustainability in packaging will continue globally and e-commerce is mentioned on both of these lists as well. Brand Packaging and Outlook Group put emphasis on a standard e-commerce “one size fits all” model for packaging, a trend which appears throughout all of these lists.

If you would like to see the full lists and descriptions the links are listed below:
Outlook Group Top 5 Trends to Watch in 2017
99 Designs 9 Inspirational Packaging Design Trends for 2017
Mintel Global Packaging Trends 2017
Brand Packaging Top Packaging Trends for 2017