We Can Do Better
We can do better, America. We have to do better. Our nation is facing a serious plight that we have put up with for far too long. Someone has to speak up against the pain of peanutbuttery knuckles, stale cereal and smashed bread.
Let me take a moment to paint everyone a picture: you want to make a PB&J sandwich from a jar about 75% empty. You don’t even give it a second thought as you dip your knife into the jar. Halfway down you realize the PB has reached that level where your hand will be covered in the sticky spread as soon as you pull the knife out. Since you can’t live the rest of your life with your hand stuck in the jar you pull it out. As your thoughts become violent and riddled with expletives you throw away the jar and decide to buy a new one. Jif thanks you for that by the way; you just threw out perfectly good product because their packaging stinks.
How about cereal? While the bag inside a box idea is adequate, what happens after you open the cereal is just utterly unacceptable. Anyone notice that as soon as that first bowl is poured the bag becomes extra wide in the middle, thus making the box expand and not allowing the flimsy cardboard flaps at the top to close properly? I have, I hate it and it really aggravates my slightly OCD tendencies. What you’re left with is a torn box of cereal that won’t close and will be stale in one week’s time. Yes, there are alternative ways of housing your bran flakes but why should we have to change our routines because Kellogg can’t get their act together?
My last major issue (don’t even get me started on the relish squeeze bottle. Apparently, Heinz thinks it’s a good idea to dispense something chunky out of a ketchup bottle) is with bread. Why in the world is the softest most fragile grocery item sold in a plastic bag? I mean come on; shouldn’t this be in a box of some sort? No matter how nicely you ask the bag boy to put the bread on top he doesn’t seem to understand and will put it beneath my weekly supply of soup and cases of diet coke. Could it be that he’s just not the sharpest tool in the shed? Of course, and probably highly accurate but we can give the well meaning boy a break by selling me bread in a less-crushable container.
This is 2013…we have phones that can tell us jokes (hey, siri, riddle me this…why does my bread look like a cracker?), the science to clone and the ability to send Justin Bieber to space- here’s hoping he stays- yet the “powers that be” fail to see, or care, how consumers might be better served with packaging that just makes sense. While I understand that products are packaged in a way that is low cost, attractive and can be displayed easily I also understand that consumers pay for these products and expect them to perform at a level most are not reaching. It is easy to say that the marketplace is now more competitive and customers are more demanding than they used to be, so isn’t in the best interest of these companies to rise to the challenge of pleasing the audience that pays their salaries? The common sense answer is ‘yes of course’ but then again, if common sense were in abundance we wouldn’t have flattened bread and bendable Cherrios