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Somerfield
D E S I G N
TAXI Studios, Bristol, United Kingdom
M A R K E T
United Kingdom
An informal study of fresh soup lines
at a number of other U.K. supermarkets
demonstrated that many were doing
similar things graphically. Like the
Somerfield soups, they tended
to use natural colors and prominent
photographs of the soups’ ingredients.
Somerfields creative firm, TAXI
Studios, resolved to take a different
approach to help the private-label
fresh soups stand out from the crowd.
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ext r em e ma k eove r s
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The Somerfield soup cartons that
launched were striking, with a shock of
white scrawled across a pitch-black label.
The whimsical chalkboard-style writing,
however, keeps the impression friendly
instead of severe. Intricately detailed
and colorful illustrations of the soup’s
ingredients brighten up the package
and create an easy-to-decipher system
for the many different flavors.
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Somerfield Design Process
Somerfield, with nearly 1,300 supermar-
kets and convenience stores across the
United Kingdom, specializes in fresh,
organic foods “made easy,offering
many reheatable options for busy
consumers. One of these offerings is
a line of private-label fresh soups in
the refrigerated section—easy to heat
in the microwave and eat immediately.
With flavors such as chicken and
vegetable, pea and ham, minestrone,
and broccoli and Stilton, the soups
promise hearty, healthy meals with a
fresh taste and quality ingredients.
Rea son for Redesign
Somerfields soups competed directly with fresh soups
with strong brand names, such as the New Covent Garden
Food Co. The company wanted to find a way to boost
consumer sales of the soups. Somerfield also needed to
find a way to reduce waste. The soup was packaged in
plastic bags, which often broke during shipping, wasting
a great deal of product and driving up production costs.
The bags also became extremely hot when consumers
microwaved them, posing safety problems for customers.
Somerfield charged TAXI Studios with rethinking the
soup containers. TAXI designers visited a number of
prominent U.K. supermarkets to evaluate their fresh soup
packages and were surprised to find an unfilled niche.
The conclusion was that everyone was copying each
others designs,” says TAXI’s Spencer Buck. No one
had understood that there was an opportunity to do
something different. So we did.”
Redesign Objectives
Compete directly with major brands of fresh soup
packaging by launching a unique new approach
Create a packaging system to help promote
the freshness and quality of the soups, thereby
increasing sales
Transfer the soups to more practical plastic tubs
rather than bags to make them safer, more convenient,
and more appealing to consumers
The Results
The supermarket chain rallied behind the newly rebranded
soups. Outside of the retail environment, they earned
some attention as well—the new packaging won a number
of awards, including the London International Advertising
Awards, One Show Design, Adline Magazines Cream
Award, and the F.A.B. International Food & Beverage
Creative Excellence Awards.
1
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