UK-based Creation Reprographics has lifted the lid on reprographic trends that are likely to shape how packaging is designed and produced through 2022.As a result of its position supporting printers in the FMCG, food and drink sectors, Creation gets a strong overall picture of design trends influencing the market, using this insight to shape its own offering.
Matt Francklow, Managing Director, Creation Reprographics, elaborates, “We’re heading into one of the most exciting periods of change that the packaging industries have seen and there’s a lot to talk about in terms of driving trends. There’s a real buzz for brand owners and their printers right now after the challenges of COVID-19 and we’re seeing a lot of innovation as they look to reconnect with consumers.
“One particularly interesting shift is in haptic marketing and tactile finishes; after we’ve become used to ‘hands-off’ retailing, consumers are getting back in touch with the feel of packaging. Metallics with hot and cold foil stamping are certainly proving to be on the up and we’re seeing a lot of interest in this finish. For designers, it’s a way to make even the most everyday of products feel more luxurious and special without adding too much cost. Increasingly, we are seeing metallics paired with matte finish inks – the contrast adds even more visual impact both on-shelf, and critically, on-screen. We’re likely to see a lot more of this mode of thinking as omni-channel retail continues to become the norm.
“For printers and their brand customers, it’s clear that ‘sustainability’ is staying front and centre. On some fronts in packaging there’s a sense of ‘green fatigue’ but we cannot afford to take our foot off the pedal when it comes to creating a more sustainable and more robust print industry. From our own perspective, we’re seeing this come to the fore in the increasing use of solvent-free flexo plates, which remove the need for harmful solvent washout in prepress, while also being faster and higher quality – the technology definitely points to the future of packaging and label production. It proves that ‘sustainable’ doesn’t have to mean compromises.”
Francklow concludes, “In terms of visual design, 2022 is shaping up to be a year of minimalism, clean lines and colour blocking. While vibrancy and contrast has been used to invoke energy and enthusiasm in consumers, we see a rise in packaging designed to do the opposite, creating a more calming psychological effect. This means clean lines, pastels and gradients are back on the design agenda. The approach is closely connected to neuro-marketing, which aims to use areas of marketing, including packaging, to create a specific emotional or cognitive response. All in, there’s a great deal of change happening in packaging design and along with it, a lot of opportunity.”