Food truly is one of the few needs we cannot do without. While the need is real, the desire to satisfy our hunger with foods that excites us, is rapidly replacing the need into a want.
They say that we eat with our eyes first, so it goes without saying that presenting food in a visually engaging manner is going to arouse our senses and entice us to want it.
Now more than ever, supermarket shelf space is precious, smaller brands have to battle it out with the big brands, negotiating with retailers to put their product on the shelf. But things are changing. The small business owner is having a go, believing in their product, investing and relying on the packaging to give them the presence they need.
Likewise, existing food brands have had a product that has performed well over the years and have found themselves in a position that demands them to take another look at their branding and packaging of their products. Past performance is no guarantee for their ongoing success and new competitors to the market can challenge their position on the supermarket shelf. Refreshing the brand, the packaging and creating new innovations within their products are just a few of the ways they are able to re-stimulate consumer interest.
This is where we come in – creating the desire, the want and ultimately, the need – through the visual packaging of the product. With only a few seconds to attract, engage, educate and finally assure the consumer their buying choice is sound, is no mean feat, especially when they are aware of the many misrepresentations, marketing buzz words and empty promises some brands use to promote their product.
Cutting through these misrepresentations with contemporary food styling which uses the main ingredients as an integral part of the design, offers a unique approach and conveys the idea of transparency in the process.
Creating a visual feast for our eyes in this way heightens the senses. Using the natural colours of the ingredients, arranging them into unique design solutions our taste receptors recognise as sweet, salty, bitter, sour and umami signals to our brain the expected flavour experience.
Food is an exciting medium as an art form. It comes in a variety of colours, textures, shapes and sizes. It can be liquid, solid or in a state somewhere in between. We enjoy it cold, warm and hot. How we present it is limited only by our imagination.
Mondo Nougat – sweet
Our first real experimentation with food as an art form was for Mondo Nougat. The delicate flavours of each key ingredient explored the vibrancy of cherries, cranberry, pistachio’s, macadamia’s and honey. Arranging them in swirling patterns against a white background, the sweet sensations of nougat instantly signal the brain and excite the taste buds of the sweet encounter awaiting them. (This may be just my sweet tooth getting excited here, but you get the picture!)
The chocolate coated series Mondino, continues with playful styling of the chocolate with each design inspired by the artistry of:- The Aztec’s (Chilli Nougat), Van Gogh’s The Starry Night (Soft Nougat) and the artistic endeavours of Jackson Pollock (Crunchy Nougat). The photography for these were all completed in-house at Dessein.
The Dieline featured the Mondo Nougat on their blog in 2014 and was a 2014 Finalist in New Zealand’s Best Awards.
Similarly, a flavour explosion of spices carefully arranged around the new Heat and Eat range of sausages instantly identifies the uniqueness of the Thai Chicken, Mexican Salsa, Polish Kransky and Spanish Chorizo sausages for Hunsa – an Australian smallgoods company with over 30 years in the business. Again, the delicate placement of spices surrounding the sausage, pop against the black background, catching our attention and exciting us with the promise of a savoury meal with spice!
At the end of the day, if the packaging presents a visual feast customers are engaged with, the more likely they are to stop and take a second look. If the flavours appeal to them, and the product fits within their lifestyle, then they are more inclined to choose a packaged product that delivers what it promises.
And hey, who doesn’t like to play with their food!