Monday, January 17, 2011

The Woes of Packaging, Part I

I understand that companies need to make modifications to the packaging that they ship their product(s) in. Sometimes it's to make shipping and/or display easier. Sometimes it's to make shoplifting more difficult. Sometimes it's to ensure the health and safety of the consumer. But sometimes the packaging that they design is downright aggravating![1]

Take, for example, the safety seal on a jar of Miracle Whip. It's a paper cover that goes to the edge of the jar and then stops. Except for three excruciatingly tiny flaps, you cannot get a grip on the seal to tear it off. And if you're fortunate enough to get a decent enough grip on one of those tiny, flimsy flaps to actually start pulling it up, the paper immediately tears. Then you're presented with Dastardly Deed #2: there's a thin layer of plastic on the underside of the paper that doesn't come up with the paper. So now you have to poke a hole in the plastic and stick your finger inside so that you can tear off the rest of the paper and plastic. Congratulations: you now have bacteria from your finger in your food and Miracle Whip all over your finger. Lest you think that this justifies distaste for Miracle Whip, the seal on the Mayonnaise (pronounced MAY-oh-NAYZ, not MAN-ayz; mouse over for IPA) is equally diabolical.[2]

But the fun doesn't stop there. How about cereal boxes? I get the importance of having a tab so that you can reseal the box. But why do they make it so that it nearly tears off every time you open a new box? And is in really necessary to make the bag so hard to open? It's hard to keep your cereal fresh when the bag tears down the side more often than it tears open at the top, like it's supposed to.

Next in line is the unnecessary tab on other boxes. Above is shown a box of jalapeño poppers.[3] Does this box need to be recloseable? No, not really. But the little flap at the ends of the box both have deep, pointy tabs that are virtually impossible to unhook. Instead you end up ripping half the box just trying to get your poppers out. Why all the hassle, T.G.I. Friday's? How about some T.G.I. Easy to Open This Box So I Can Eat My Food?


[1] I've already addressed why I hate Hershey's Kisses wrappers in my post Hershey's Kisses.

[2] This nasty little packaging trick is also found on Ketchup bottles.

[3] Read my review of the poppers themselves, here.

1 comment:

  1. I'm glad that you blogged about this!!! I have to say that I agree that it is quite possibly the most ridiculous undertaking of my life! :)