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Moving Beyond Candy Canes & Mistletoe
The Holidays Anytime
By Carolina Pichardo

When it comes to packaging, nothing beats the glamour and effort that goes into the holiday season. However, the decorating and bright colors are no longer just for Christmas, with companies venturing into marketing other festivities, such as Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day, even the change of the seasons; but then there are those that have just as much success celebrating nothing.

Although the holiday season is a top seller for many companies, many have learned that there are other days during the year that can bring up the numbers in sales as well. In the U.S., holidays such as Mother’s Day and Valentine’s Day are becoming big sellers, with packaging being the key points of sale.

The Republic of Tea's collection of seasonal packaging.
Valentine’s Day and Mother’s Day, Even Bridal Teas
If chocolates and flowers seem outdated to you, maybe it is simply because it is. Companies are realizing that these holidays shouldn’t be left to the greeting cards and flower shops alone, because nothing can be as intimate and warm as having a cup of tea with a loved one.

The Republic of Tea, one of the leaders in premium teas, realized this some time ago, when they released their “Rose Petal Tea, Tea for the Queen of Heart.” Although it was a limited-time edition treat, the company had to bring back this wonderful blend of young rose buds and petals, with full-leaf China black tea, and just a small hint of spice. Wrapped up in the company’s usual tin, the tea can also be purchased with as an infuser set. Republic also has a Holiday Collection, which includes Hot Apple Cider Tea, Comfort and Joy Tea and Tea of Good Tidings.

Seasonal Selling
Something as small as a change in weather, whether the Spring or Fall season, can also prove to be as a means for switching the packaging scheme.

Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, based in Vermont are just one of the candidates that have developed a line of coffees simply for the seasons. Companies have realized that there are different flavors and blends that go along with the senses during the seasons, and packaging-wise, can sell to that notion. Although Green Mountain maintains their traditional style of packaging, simply adding a touch of flowers and brighter colors to this otherwise springy product, or the implementation of a coconut to take you on a nice, brief morning vacation, their insights are correct: selling the need for change. The company also conducts monthly campaigns – designed to introduce customers and take them on a “personal” tour of the companies’ different blends and estates.

With bright, fruity and coconut blends that are sure to wake to wakes the senses, if the brightness of the Spring sun or Summer heat hasn’t done so yet, Green Mountain’s organic blend will more than likely do the trick.

Celebrating Nothing,
But a Ducky Life

Packaging doesn't have to be expensive and lavish. Simplicity has its perks as well.
Ducky Life Teas, a specialty tea packer who also packs private label, on the other hand, has a different concept in mind when packaging and selling their products. “Our packaging has nothing to do with the holidays or seasons,” says the company’s owner and formulator, Jane Graver Sandlar. Her company’s philosophy, she says is simple – “Drink tea for a ducky life!” And although this sounds easy enough, her choice of packaging goes beyond that. “We needed the packaging to be simple, and quickly realized that the whole thing would come together nicely with just one type of label.” Sandlar created a small, round label that she places on the bottom of the tins and bags. Along with that, the company is also environmentally friendly, recycling everything from organic wooden boxes, tins and the “ducky” clothespin that they attach to each order.

For Ducky Life, this seems to all come together. “I believe that tea has been a major influence in our civilization,” she says, “and [we] try to honor that importance with our packaging, and with the reverence we demonstrate to our tea and the people who buy it.”

Decorating Some More
Whether there is something to celebrate or not, don’t go simply by the usual celebrations. If your community celebrates something that is not really noted on your calendar, go ahead and make it official. Use colors and packaging that are familiar to your surroundings. (Never underestimate the power of color.) If there are certain events or town meetings that take place, use colors that most represent your area and improvise. What each company has done is simply to have a good product, used the power of festivities and presented their products to provoke those merry sentiments.

They kept with the packaging times, and understood what their customers wanted as well. Apply these concepts, and a little sprinkle of intuition and every holiday will be a merry one.

Tea & Coffee - March, 2007
Theta Ridge Coffee

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