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Welcome to this week’s Innovation Zone snapshot from ThePackHub.

ThePackHub collates up to 20 new packaging innovations every week for our Innovation Zone database (book a one-to-one online demo here).

We have selected four new initiatives for you today.


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Thursday 4th February 2021 at 3 pm GMT

FREE one hour webinar. Catch up on the latest sustainable packaging innovation trends with this whistle-stop tour of the latest initiatives.

We will cover many recent in-market and developmental examples to inspire you and keep you up to speed.

We will also be joined by Charpak who will be discussing their latest innovations.

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Thursday 4th February 2021 at 3 pm GMT

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#1 Refillable deodorant goes mainstream with US launch


Unilever owner personal care brand Dove is leading by example with the US introduction of its first-ever refillable deodorant. Dove has partnered with lobbyists A Plastic Planet and Dutch design consultancy VanBerlo to design a white refillable stainless steel case. It is protected by white secondary packaging made of 100% FSC-grade paper. The design and manufacturing process has been managed to avoid excess material use and to create a product that consumers would buy just once and use for life. The durable stainless steel case is made with 54% less plastic than its Dove deodorant predecessors and comes with a lifetime guarantee. The deodorant inside the case is the same glycerin-based Dove formula. The Dove Refillable Deodorant Starter Kit includes a case and deodorant and costs $15 available online via Target and Walmart. The health and beauty market has been working hard to reduce instances of single-use packaging and the deodorant sector has been particularly active as reported in the Innovation Zone.

#2 Hand soap refill in drinks can format

KanKan is a soap brand that is embracing a different pack format as a way to stand out as well as to make a sustainable packaging measure. Unusually, KanKan hand soap is available in a beverage can format that is used to refill the conventional hand pump bottle.  The brand is also committed to planting a tree with every can sold and have partnered with for the initiative. The brand is keen to point out that the can is the only pack that more than covers its recycling costs to help finance the collection and recycling of other materials such as plastic and glass. The super light weight of about 13g is also beneficial for the reduction in transportation emissions. KanKan has a starter set that costs £24 and includes a can and refill bottle. This is not the first unusual product the Innovation Zone has tracked in a format conventionally used for beverages – see Chicken stock breaks category rules in recyclable can format.

More info in The Innovation Zone.

#3 Beer brand puts pictures of consumers’ pets on their cans


The Budweiser beer brand has celebrated the Christmas period in the United States in an unusual and distinctive way. The leading beer brand has promised to put pictures of consumers’ pet dogs on their cans of beer. The activity is part of a contest held in partnership with the Instagram social channel We Rate Dogs and is intended to “honour the quarantined companions”. To participate, beer drinkers just need to post on their Facebook, Instagram or Twitter social media feeds with an appealing photo of their pets with the tag #Pupweiser. Budweiser will randomly select the winners to receive a can of beer personalized with a photo of their own dog. Winners are notified via Budweiser social media for the world to see the results in all its glory. See also Each seasonal beer bottle has millions of different and unique festive patterns.


More info in The Innovation Zone.

#4 Shampoo refill created in squeezable tube format

The reusable and refillable packaging market has seen good growth over the last 18 months and has been seemingly largely unaffected by global Covid pandemic disruption. The health and beauty sector has been particularly active tapping into motivated sustainable consumers in this sector as well as also benefiting from products that are less problematic to switch to reusable or refillable formats. Take a look at these examples. UK haircare brand Larry King has a policy to do everything it can to reduce the use of plastic in its business. The brand states that it actively looks for packaging alternatives to plastic across glass, aluminium and card wherever possible. The business has created a packaging solution for their shampoo that is dispensed in squeezable tube format. This is an unusual pack format for the bathroom. It can be used to dispense the product in its own right or the contents can be decanted into a shampoo bottle for use at another time.

Watch our latest ThePackhub Expert Interview


Peggy Cross discusses EcoTensil’s range of utensils that are the ideal alternative to disposable plastic cutlery. You can watch here. 

Packaging question of the week

Brands, retailers and suppliers should share more information about Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) when announcing new packaging innovations?  Vote and comment now. 

Last time: Post COVID, 42% thought the second half of 2021 would be when the packaging industry will start to go back to ‘normal.

Please visit ThePackHub or call us on +44(0)118 963 9990 to find out more about the range of packaging innovation services we offer. We’ve delivered projects for a number of brand owner, retailer and packaging suppliers.

Until next time. Happy innovating.

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