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Enhancing the readability of pre-packaged meat products in the fresh food department

  • Service Design
  • Retail & Food

Making meat products easier to find, identify and choose

Adjusting the space, packaging and arrangements of products in order to support quicker and easier identification and choice among the different qualities, types, cuts and preparations of meat products in the fresh food department. OKay hired Achilles Design for a project that aimed at stimulating the overall performance of their fresh-cut, pre-packaged meat products section of their fresh food department. With other influential trends are also affecting volume, such as new lifestyles and growing climate awareness, the overall goal was to retain a fair market share. Our role was to research, develop and validate solutions for the hypothesis that the current way the products were presented, lacked intuitiveness and was detrimental to the attractiveness of the products. For us, that meant that we had to analyze the design of the space, the packaging, and the customer journey.

Analyzing how we make choices in meat products

With the constraint of limiting scope to the space of using only fresh food department adjustments, we first analyzed the in-store customer journey that leads to the purchase of pre-packaged meat. We therefore had to find out how a consumer is becoming aware of the product range, and then finding out which search attributes and quality cues are used to come closer to a product selection.
Together with the OKay-team, we researched, interviewed, and observed consumers about their process and preferences and observed how employees structured the spaces. Using different methods and prototypes to capture information, we learned what struggles, associations, and perceptions were influencing customer choice and behavior. We generated hypotheses about how the space, range structure and packaging could be optimized to help consumers make choices.

Validating scenarios

From the hypotheses, we generated a range of solutions, ranging from more transformational to incremental. This was done in co-creation with the relevant stakeholders such as the retailers’ buyers, packaging designers, marketeers, infrastructure designers and store managers. Individual items, such as the labels on the packaging or the angle to present a packaging to provide visibility, were combined into total concepts. These were translated into multiple interactive Virtual Reality prototypes of the entire space and components, which we used to immerse and research consumers opinion and behavior.
The concept offers solutions on the level of packaging, section, and section structure.

Spatial service system

The adapted packaging includes a new materialization and label design that facilitates easier and faster identification of meat cut and meat type. For the new packaging concepts, sustainability criteria were also used to generate and select product candidates. The sections got updated with new lighting, new visual cues, quieter colors to promote a premium feel and better visibility on the cuts by optimizing facing and view angles. The validated solution was then summarized and translated into a service blueprint.
The result
The method and output of this service design proved to be a valuable guide to support choices during implementation. By applying the proposed solutions, OKay projects that the revenues and market share in pre-packaged meat are secured and remain competitive in the changing market.