Packaging to 'honor the pig'

by Joanie Spencer
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In the realm of healthy snacks, protein is king. So when Southern Recipe, a brand from Rudolph Foods, Lima, OH, decided to create a line of artisan pork rinds with a better-for-you twist, the company wanted to celebrate the protein right on the package while also promoting the product’s healthier attributes.

“When you’re trying to note ‘better-for-you,’ you need to be simple,” said Mark Singleton, Rudolph Foods’ vice-president of marketing. “But we don’t want to hide from the pig. So our central focus was, ‘Let’s honor the pig.’ ”

The next priority for the package design was getting noticed on store shelves. The company went through numerous tests — as well as design iterations — to get it just right in terms of visibility in not only the pork rind section but also the healthy snack section. “We did prototype after prototype … from the imagery to the overall feel of the bag and weight of the film, we really wanted to note a premium, artisan product,” Mr. Singleton said. “I think we’ve done a good job with that.”

Mr. Singleton also noted that package functionality and product freshness also played a critical role in package development. “We wanted something that was going to keep the product as fresh as possible because everything we do is focused on great product.”

The company used HD flexo printing materials, which, according to Mr. Singleton, showcased the design in great detail. “We took high definition photographs of the product, and the clarity on the bag is just amazing. Each spice is discernable — I don’t think I’ve ever seen a better looking rind.”

The new line comes in Korean Kimchee Barbecue, Pineapple Ancho, Sea Salt and Cracked Pepper, and Spicy Dill Pickle flavors. Made with 40% less salt than Rudolph’s traditional offerings, Small Batch rinds also have no artificial colors and no MSG, and are fried in sunflower oil, giving the product its signature texture and nutritional aspects. “This new Small Batch lineup is not your daddy’s pork rind; it’s not your granddad’s pork rind,” Mr. Singleton said. “This is a different kind of rind.”
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