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Cartons & Casing

Designer wins award for second year running with eco-friendly design

Marie Falk

A Swedish designer has scooped a top prize at the Pro Carton Young Designer Awards for the second year running.

Marie Falk’s packaging solution ‘Save the Trip’ was conceived while still at school and followed her winning entry in last year’s annual competition run by Pro Carton, the European Association of Carton and Cartonboard manufacturers.

‘Save the Trip’ was one of more than 400 entries from students at 50 design schools across 21 countries. Marie attended the gala award ceremony along with nine other finalists and was one of four winners chosen.

Falk’s concept combines healthy snacks with games and crosswords for young travellers to make long journeys more entertaining. The pack, made entirely from cartonboard, is said to be easily flattened and recycled.

Speaking about her design, Marie said, “The brief for the assignment was to rethink food packaging to make it more fun, enjoyable and appealing for children.

“The inspiration for my concept comes from my own experiences. We are totally in the hands of service stations or convenience stores when we travel, and the only choices tend to be fast food which means that you often end up with packaging made of multiple materials, all of which you must get rid of somewhere.

“I wanted to create an environmentally-friendly pack that fulfilled a need for families with children travelling, but also a slim, price optimised solution for distributors.”

Marie’s ‘Save the Trip’ design

On winning for the second time, Marie said, “It was unreal! Unlike last year, when I was part of a team, this year I did everything myself – the original idea, the structural design, the graphics, mock-ups and documentation. When I realised I was in the final again, I really felt I could relax and that I’d done something that was really good. As I thought winning again really wasn’t an option, I just enjoyed participating and felt so pleased to be able to relive it once again.”

Marie is now working as a designer for Scandinavian staircase manufacturer Eurostair AB. Commenting on the current debate surrounding waste packaging and plastics, she said, “We need packages that are easy to recycle. However, while most people believe that it’s the packaging itself that’s bad for the environment, what we actually need is packaging that can help to tackle food waste.

“If you look at packs today in general, many are hard to empty and have excessive outer packaging. They’re bulky and often made with multiple materials that complicate recycling. We must rethink. Brands need to consider packaging that has a clear environmental focus. We also need to encourage customers to recycle and brands to be more transparent in their environmental work.”

Tony Hitchin, general manager of Pro Carton added, “Marie deserved to win Young Designer of the Year for a second time in a row for her ingenious use of sustainable carton and cartonboard to create a product that really responds to consumers’ needs. Her design is yet more proof that cartonboard packaging is environmentally friendly, economically balanced and can be entertaining all at once!”

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