Just one word… Plastics
Today I met with a supplier from CTL Solutions PTE Ltd.
Their tagline: “For all your alternative packaging needs.”
It was an informative meeting. I looked through a few samples, discussed other items they could create, and talked about the importance of finding proper take-away / carry-out packaging.
I learned a lot about plastic and paper packaging today. Granted my knowledge on the subject was near zero prior to this meeting, but who would have expected such an interesting coffee session?
Most of the take-away sushi containers I’ve seen are flimsy and crumple when you squeeze too hard. I worry that unless the container is stapled the food will spill while I carry it home. That experience affects my impression of the whole restaurant.
That led me to think about how Standing Sushi Bar will approach packaging:
- Thick, solid material – no flimsiness! If people want to hand-carry it, stuff it in a bag, or knock it around I want to ensure that the contents don’t spill out.
- Vehicle for awareness – the logo should be on the box and on the bag. Perhaps one day people will prize my logoed bags like they do a purse that says Gucci on it.
- Clear top, colored bottom – I’ve decided against paper containers because you can’t see the contents. With a clear plastic top you can see the type of sushi inside. It’s important that people can look at the pre-packaged take-away sushi and feel confident that it is high-quality and value-for-money. With a dark green or black bottom, that will contrast nicely with the color of the fish and rice regardless what surface the container is put on.
I hadn’t thought about the bags we would need to provide to take-away customers until today’s discussion with the CTL rep. I hope we have many repeat customers; I am toying with providing linen bags for frequent diners and providing a discount on the food when they reuse the bag on subsequent visits. While producing the bags might be costly, they are eco-friendly, the customer can re-use them (not just for sushi), they look nice, and the bags would be seen enough to increase brand awareness.
Never think about packaging before? Try it now and see if we’ve missed anything major on how it relates to the restaurant!
Oh, golden rule – the packaging shouldn’t cost more than the food. :) (The representative kept emphasizing this after I went off on a tangent thinking of what kind of custom-design packaging I could create).
Mr. McGuire: There’s a great future in plastics. Think about it. Will you think about it?
Ben: Yes I will.
Mr. McGuire: Shh! Enough said. That’s a deal.