How Body Energy Club Took Hold of its Sustainable Future

If one thing folks who live an active lifestyle know, it’s that the right supplements matter when you’re trying to reach specific fitness goals. When Dominick Tousignant created Body Energy Club, he was tired. He was tired of going on the hunt, trying to find all the supplements that would impact his workouts because no one was selling everything he needed in one place. At one point, he was making three stops in a day. And because of that, a business was born. 

Starting back in 2001, Body Energy Club was a simple vision: one place for all the needed products for a healthy lifestyle. The company started with a tiny shop in Vancouver, but the people had spoken before long. They wanted stores all over the city and in the suburbs. And soon, there were lines out the door of thirsty customers ready to grab one of Body Energy Club’s signature smoothies. (The company soon expanded to the States, too.)

Soon after establishing themselves as the premier supplement source in British Columbia, Tousignant took the next logical leap of faith: he started his own branded supplement line, including protein powders and creatine. Tousignant wanted the brand to be something everyone could feel good about, not only with what they were putting in their bodies but also with how the company saw its place within the more meaningful conversation regarding world impact. What started as a simple store became a community of health-driven evangelists who wanted to keep up with taking their health to the next level and championed a more verdant approach to caring for the environment. 

A vision for wellness 

As the brand grew, so did the concerns about how the company affected the earth. Tousignant didn’t want his brand to be complicit with how it affected the environment; he wanted to be a mission-driven company to rally against climate change and not be another contributing factor to more plastic sitting in landfills. 

That’s where a relationship with ePac made the most sense. 

It was a natural fit – Body Energy Club liked the options ePac provided with PCR, biodegradable, and compostable packaging, especially the PCR bags with flat-bottom gussets to make stand up pouches. They could display the product in a meaningful way and do it with far less guilt. Because ePac can help companies do exactly what they want, Body Energy Club was able to play around with options, as they did with CreaPure creatine powder, at first and then move into different sizing options with their three other powders. 

One thing that Body Energy Club wanted was a clean look, which ePac was able to provide. Because the ingredients are simple in the product, they wanted a similar look and feel to their packaging. If they were going to commit to using fresh ingredients and avoid using preservatives and other unnecessary, unhealthy ingredients, everything down to the look and feel of the packaging had to hold the same ethos. 

A brand dedicated to sustainability 

But Body Energy Club wanted more. They wanted to remain dedicated to their values. Hence, members of the company’s C-Suite got together and pledged: They’d create a closed-loop recycling system by incentivizing clients to bring their used bags and drop them off in the special bins at the store. Doing this works twofold: the customers get 50% off at the smoothie bar, and it brings them back into the store, which lends itself as a premium opportunity to continue to cross-sell additional products. 

This method has given Body Energy Club the ability to control their supply chain. Body Energy Club controls the process with so many packaging products and raw materials delayed due to international logistical problems, maintaining their packaging with local manufacturing through ePac’s Vancouver plant, and filling their bags. They remain in stock with their most popular products, increasing customer satisfaction.

Body Energy Club wanted to contribute to positive world influence, and even by just taking control of their recycling and packaging, they’re doing just that. If more brands thought like them, we might see more positive change, one half-priced smoothie at a time. 

If you’re a company looking to lessen your environmental impact, we’d love to help you navigate what your future looks like. We’ve worked with big and small brands, and every conversation and collaboration count.

Why You Should Choose Custom Vitamin & Supplement Packaging

This may come as no surprise, but the vitamin, supplement, and nutraceutical markets are on an impressive growth trajectory. 

Consumers have long been interested in healthy products like vitamins, energy supplements, protein, and other supplements. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been a greater push for better overall health and wellness as consumers turn to products that provide preventive care, immune support, and an overall health boost.

In a recent report, ReportLinker stated that the size of the global supplements & nutrition packaging market was estimated at $20.52 billion in 2020 and is expected to reach $21.40 billion in 2021, and then $26.93 billion by 2026 (Supplements & Nutrition Packaging Market Research Report by (

In response to this growth, many manufacturers of nutritional products, nutraceuticals, and biomedicals are offering additional product options by taking advantage of some of the more convenient features of flexible vitamin packaging to improve the consumer experience and compete in this growing market. 

Why Flexible Packaging

Flexible packaging has long been a favorite of both manufacturers and consumers. One key differentiator is the environmental benefits of flexible over rigid plastic. 

Considering the complete lifecycle of packaging materials, flexible packaging requires less energy to manufacture and transport, reduces product waste, and sends less material to landfills.

Additionally, consumers prefer the convenience of flexible packaging― they’re lighter than their rigid counterparts, and they’re easier to handle, carry, and store. Plus, many are simple to open and stand up for easy scooping. Many of these containers are equipped with convenient reclose options to make the packaging resealable for convenience and extended product freshness. 

Most importantly, flexible packaging maintains vitamin, supplement, and nutraceutical potency by addressing specific needs such as:

  • Barriers that prevent extreme temperatures, oxygen, and moisture penetration to protect the product..
  • Resealable, child-proof zippers that keep the package sealed in between use and eliminate accidental ingestion. 
  • Spill-proof functionality to prevent powders or liquids from accidentally escaping. 

Considering these differentiators and benefits, it’s no wonder that flexible packaging is preferred by the segment. And by choosing custom flexible packaging, you can set your brand apart from the competition. 

What does ‘custom’ mean?

To create ‘custom’ bags, you work with a partner to create fully branded packaging with the exact size, shape, and functionality you specify, be it in single-serve, multi-use, or even family-sized pouches.

Options for custom supplement packaging include stand-up or lay flat pouches with digitally printed branding and graphics. As you look at creating the right pouch for your vitamin and supplement application, consider that you have many size options: 

  • If you’re looking for a single dose package, consider stick packs or single-serve tear packs that allow you to create either a sample or travel-sized sachet for portability, as part of your marketing, promotional or brand awareness efforts. Single-use packs are generally easy to open and work well with drink mixes, protein powders, vitamins, collagen, and even energy gels. 
  • You can develop stand up pouches in sizes ranging from a handful of doses to a large pack that offers multiple servings, with easy open, reseal capabilities that stand up for convenient storage and product use. They work well with a variety of vitamin mixes, hydration drinks, protein powders, and collagen supplements.

Partner with ePac

Partnering with ePac means you get a trusted packaging partner that can provide you with a variety of options for your nutraceutical, vitamin, or supplement package. We utilize digital printing technology that allows for short runs, fast turnaround, and even high-level perks like product authentication, track and trace, and variable data printing that allows you to print a unique design on each SKU in your print run. 

With variable data printing, you can add a unique, serialized QR code to each package that allows you to do several things: protect your products from counterfeiters and product authentication. Consumers are able to scan digitally printed codes on your packaging to verify that the product they’ve purchased is authentic, which can be necessary with the rise of third-party eCommerce platforms.

Then there’s track and trace applications. With full visibility into the product journey from inception to end-of-life, consumers have the ability to learn how and where their product was sourced, and brands can gain insights to strengthen their supply chains. 

And lastly, variable data printing allows you to boost package aesthetics. You can create fresh and interactive content to increase brand awareness and consumer engagement. And with digitally printed high-definition graphics, mosaic, and collage designs that differ for each SKU, plus features like glossy and soft-touch finishes, and spot embellishments, you’ll be able to create a totally unique and custom package to stand out from the competition.

Ready to get started? Call us today and let us walk you through how to create a custom pouch for your next vitamin, supplement, or nutraceutical product.  

Skratch Labs Prints Limited Run Gold Packaging

Since 2012, Skratch Labs, a Boulder, CO company, has been selling sports nutrition products designed for athletes to reach peak performance and health without sacrificing on taste.

This year, the brand is taking a new design approach with limited edition gold packaging for the love of sport.

Gold Packaging

The company, which sells hydration and recovery mixes, as well as energy bars, crispy rice cakes, and chews made from real ingredients, decided to revamp its packaging in 2017 to upgrade to fully custom, high-quality stand-up pouches from ePac to deliver a better customer user experience.

As part of their continued collaboration with ePac, they created the special edition gold packaging for Skratch Labs’ sport hydration mix lemon & lime. The multi-serving, resealable stand-up pouch is all gold with a soft touch finish and a metallic appearance. It is signed by 2016 Gold Medalist and two-time World Champion runner & former triathlete, Gwen Jorgensen, one of the brand’s sponsored athletes.

When asked about the inspiration and motivation behind the new design, Elliot Freeman, VP, Marketing at Skratch Labs, said it was all about enthusiasm for world class athletic events that have returned in 2021. He said the brand is ready to bring some hype to sports fans everywhere after the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic put a freeze on sporting events worldwide.

“This past year has been so different. We are so excited to see top athletes come back to competing on the world stage, and we wanted to share that excitement with our fans and customers,” stated Freeman. “We want to rally fans around watching the best athletes in the world accomplish incredible feats.”

The Digital Printing Difference

The execution of the limited edition package was only a few months in the making. Skratch Labs was able to add the limited run to an existing order, which was only possible because of ePac’s innovative digital printing technology.

“We have worked with them [ePac] a ton and have a great relationship with them. Essentially, we had the idea to do a short run of this limited edition package and because they have the capability, we added it on to an existing run. We did not need a 10,000-bag commitment. This allows us to do more fun ideas,” asserted Freeman.

With digital printing, there are never any plates, and brands of all sizes can take advantage of short runs for seasonal and promotional packaging.

“As a marketer, having the capability to do short runs of packaging allows us to bring more ideas to market with less risk. We do seasonal flavors, design changes…great packaging isn’t a hurdle with something like that. If we want to test a new flavor or experiment, it’s convenient that the packaging isn’t a hurdle,” said Freeman.

This isn’t the brand’s first time utilizing ePac’s innovative digital printing technology to create aesthetically pleasing and unique packaging. In 2019, as an official sponsor of Team EF Education First Pro Cycling, Skratch Labs created limited edition pouches for its hydration mix that resembled the team’s pink argyle jerseys.

Each pouch featured pink and blue color-shifting patterns and designs thanks to variable data printing and mosaic print technology. The entire print run of all 10,000 pouches featured a distinctive design, exclusive to that specific pouch.

“We have done a couple of limited edition packages in the past, and working with ePac enables us to do that because we can do short runs and not pay for plate fees,” added Freeman.

Variable data printing (VDP) is only possible using digital print technology. Brands are able to create customized and personalized designs on each package. Each of the thousands of hydration mix packages in an order can have a unique design without slowing down printing. The technology also allows for the ability to guard against counterfeiting, provide track and trace, drive digital consumer engagement, and enhance product shelf presence.

“Design is so important, especially for a brand like ours with passionate fans that love our products. Great design helps to elevate the meaning of our brand and allows us to do something different than grocery store brands,” concluded Freeman.

Looking for a better way to create customized packaging?

ePac is built around state-of-the-art digital printing technology, with a focus on fast turnaround times and short to medium runs. Since there are never any plates to set up, brands of all sizes can enjoy custom variable printing, ideal for special, limited edition projects like this one.

Call us today to see how we can help you with your next project!

Amvor takes control of its packaging with digitally printed pouches

Amvor Health & Wellbeing entered the health nutritional market with its range of vitamins and supplements four years ago when founder, Amrik Singh, decided to take matters into his own hands. Rather than relying on prescribed medications to improve his health, he wanted to find supplements that could help him take control of his life.  

“I realised that one way or another I had always wanted to help others who just wanted to live well and not get stuck with medications,” says Amrik. “But when I looked at what was out there, I found that although there’s a raft of vitamins and supplements, there just wasn’t what I required nor had the convenience I wanted.” 

Launching new products into a highly competitive market is a challenge, but Amrik and the Amvor team knew that they could offer something better in terms of quality and also deliver a more cost-effective solution. The result was a product line that comprises seven types of supplements and one testosterone booster, all made in the West Midlands, UK, with the finest ingredients sourced from all over the globe.

“I wanted the quality and performance of the vitamins and supplements to have the best chance of helping, without customers having to pay over the top prices. Similar products to what we sell are up to three times the price, while many others are just an inferior quality and dosage,” he explained.

He added, “We now have a really great range, which includes an excellent testosterone booster. Our range is suitable for anyone over 18, and we’ve formulated our products with premium quality active ingredients combined with a high performing dosage efficacy to ensure you get what’s on the label.”

Direct line to top quality packaging

When it came to specifying the packaging for Amvor Health & Wellbeing’s new line of health supplements, the team came up against a few obstacles. The family-run startup wanted the pouches to convey the high quality of the ingredients but just couldn’t find a supplier that could meet their criteria for short runs coupled with top quality print and finishing. 

After researching the market, they found that the minimum order quantities (MOQs) varied from supplier to supplier, as did the print quality. None of them fit with the Amvor business model until Amrik discovered ePac UK Silverstone during a web search and found that he could call them directly and speak to one of their packaging experts on the phone, rather than playing email tennis with a salesperson.  

“The biggest problem for us was the size of the pouches, as what we needed weren’t a standard size,” says Amrik. “However, all our issues were resolved when I had my first call with ePac. Then when I got a sample, I immediately realised that the material and the print quality were the best I had come across, plus I really liked the way things were done. That was it, we had found our packaging supplier!”

Digital printing makes life simple

Since its launch, ePac UK Silverstone has quickly made a name for itself as a packaging company with a difference. Customers come from many different markets and in many different sizes, but all have one thing in common: they want high quality, impactful supplement packaging that stands out on shelf or online, and as a result elevate their branding. They need flexibility, fast delivery and an understanding partner that can accommodate changes to design, print run and number of SKUs.

The technology that fulfils all those demands is the same for all customers, namely digital printing. ePac UK is leveraging the power of HP Indigo 20000 Digital Presses in combination with state-of-the-art pouch-making machinery to offer a multitude of options. This was exactly what Amvor Health & Wellbeing needed to get to market, and Amrik wasted no time in putting in his order for stand up pouches to be printed and converted at the Silverstone facility.

“I was already aware of the benefits of digital print, but it was how ePac explained the process and made it so simple, plus the fail safe for me to keep checking everything before the pouches were made, that really made the difference,” said Amrik.

Choosing a local partner is another major plus for a startup, not only because it makes delivery super-fast, but also because they know the market you are trading in and can advise on any of the packaging issues that you might come up against.

Solving the packaging headache with custom pouches

In total, eight SKUs were produced by ePac, all packed in state-of-the-art stand up pouches for a professional look and feel that can rival any of the big, established brands. They include Apple Cider Vinegar, Korean Ginseng, Turmeric with Black Pepper, Vitamin D3, Vitamin B Complex, Apple Cider Vinegar Complex, Zinc, and the 19 Alpha Blue Testosterone Booster. 

The material chosen for the pouches was a high-end soft-touch PET with press-to-close zippers and excellent barrier properties to keep the contents safe and dry. Amvor also required a customized size for the products, with the best print and material selection. “But,” said Amrik, “that was not a problem. ePac met all our needs and they did it without any fuss, so we knew we were onto a good thing and the result is absolutely fantastic!”

Nick Monk, managing partner at ePac UK Silverstone said, “Starting up a new business is stressful enough without the packaging turning into a major headache. We are always at the end of the phone ready to guide you through the whole process to find the format that best fits your purpose. And it doesn’t stop there: we are a true partner, and our mission is simply to help you grow with our custom-printed flexible packaging.”

Once the design has been decided, the pouches take less than 15 days to be produced, saving weeks if not months compared to traditional workflows. Amrik concluded, “Our products are ready in an instant, they look so good, and we have the correct material to ensure the safety of our products from damage and their performance quality. What more could we want?”

Are you looking to get your products into stand-up pouches with photo-quality print in bright, clear colours, but finding it difficult due to high minimum order quantities? Get in touch today to hear how we can help you.

Scotty’s Everyday Finds Big Success with Digital Printing

Scotty’s Everyday is a new keto and gluten-free bread mix brand out of San Diego, California. Scotty’s is all about bringing the familiar taste of bread and the joy of baking back to people with keto or gluten-free needs. The brand officially launched in late December 2020 and is sold on Amazon and their website

Beginning of a Brand

After over 30 years as a food scientist in the product development space for better-for-you brands, Scott Sturgill, Co-Founder of Scotty’s Everyday, decided the time was right to create his own product.

When asked about why he chose to launch a keto bread mix during a global pandemic, Sturgill said it came down to the right opportunity at the right time.

“We saw an opportunity,” said Sturgill. “A couple things were happening. With COVID-19 and people staying home, a new trend was emerging of people getting back in the kitchen, baking and experimenting. Baking at home really took off, and the most popular item to bake was bread.”

Sturgill explained that as the pandemic progressed, people began looking for better ways to make their own healthy food and many started to experiment with different diet lifestyles. 

“Keto has been a trend that has been growing, and certainly even during the pandemic,” said Sturgill. “But the two trends didn’t go together. We thought, ‘Is there a way to put them together?’”

A Bread Mix is Born

While it was a major challenge to create a keto friendly bread mix that was also gluten-free, easy to make that actually tasted delicious, Sturgill says he was up for the task. 

“We found there were keto bread mixes out there, but they weren’t great, and they contained either nuts or vital wheat gluten. I tried many different recipes for months and finally created a keto-friendly, zero-net-carb bread mix with the aroma and texture of fresh baked bread,” said Sturgill.

The result of his hard work is a bread mix that is easy for the user to prepare. 

Digital Printing for Baking Mix Packaging

While creating the right recipe was a challenge, finding the right printer for the flexible stand-up bread mix pouches was easy. Sturgill and his partner both had experience working with ePac and knew of the benefits of digital printing. 

“Digital printing was really important to us. As a new brand, we had to learn how to be nimble and flexible. We didn’t want to invest in a heavy inventory of printing plates that we would have to change,” said Sturgill.

With digital printing, brands no longer need plates, and are not forced into placing a massive order. As designs are updated, or recipes change, brands can change their packaging quickly and easily.  

“Digital is the way for us to remain flexible as we evolve, or we get consumer feedback. We can make changes on the fly. We love the flexibility of digital printing!” said Sturgill.

After originally ordering their first run from ePac’s Los Angeles office, the digital printer suggested they move to their Wisconsin plant since it was closer to the brand’s co-packer. This helped Scotty’s to have a faster turnaround and save money on shipping freight. 

“ePac has been great. We will continue to use digital printing as we grow and evolve,” said Sturgill. “We like the better lead times and small runs. We aren’t forced into ordering tens of thousands of packages. Plus, already we have made changes to many back-of-bags items like instructions and callouts, and it’s so easy to get that changed with ePac.” 

Baking Mix Bags

Today, Scotty’s Everyday has two SKUS: the original keto bread mix and the keto pizza crust mix. They are both sold in convenient stand up pouches from ePac. The pouches feature a matte finish for a premium look with minimalist graphics that are clean, modern, and keep the keto selling point front and center. 

The original bread mix is currently the #1 bestselling bread mix on Amazon, a standing that the company established only six weeks after launch.  The success was only possible because the brand’s delicious product is in a great package that speaks to a lot of people following a Keto, low carb, or gluten-free, lifestyle. 

“You can have the best product but if you don’t have the right package, right branding, and right message, consumers won’t put it in their cart,” said Sturgill.

Dry Food Packaging Supplies Partner

Are you looking to make a switch from your package printer? Ready to hear what digital printing can do for your brand’s baked goods packaging? With ePac, you’ll enjoy the ability to print short runs and a fast turnaround, and most importantly work with experts in the field to help you determine the right film for any project. Call us today for a free quote. 

Printed Pouches Deliver For Plant Protein Powder Entrepreneur

Spotting a problem and solving it through innovation is one of Aaron Siwoku’s many strengths. The former tech entrepreneur founded health nutrition brand The Honest Earth to develop next-generation plant-based protein powders when he couldn’t find a satisfying alternative to whey protein. Wanting to bring the new products to market in high-quality packaging that matched his brand standards and sustainability goals, Aaron has partnered with flexible packaging specialist ePac UK Silverstone.

Room For Improvement

As a multi-sports athlete, Aaron has come across many types of nutritional supplements, and he has been using plant-based protein powders before and after workouts for over 10 years. His dream was to create his own range of products completely free of dairy and soy that didn’t contain any artificial additives or preservatives, but instead included other natural ingredients that would supplement the plant protein. 

“Athletes and other people with active lifestyles are becoming more aware of the benefits of reducing or eliminating dairy, and they are realizing how that translates into greater feelings of wellbeing and health,” he says.

While there were already products on the market with those same attributes, none really hit the spot. Aaron wanted to offer a more sophisticated and better-tasting alternative to help optimize the benefits to the human body and reach higher workout and lifestyle goals. 

He says, “Since I started to fuel my body with plant protein instead of whey, I have found some ‘ok’ plant protein powders out there, but I have always felt there was room for improvement. Our new plant-based performance protein has less than 10 ingredients and is probably the first of its kind that doesn’t taste like sand mixed with water!”

Premium Packaging For Premium Product

Having teamed up with his sister to found The Honest Earth, Aaron set about creating his advanced formula, plant-based protein powders. To partly finance the venture and garner support, he set up a crowd-funding campaign on the Kickstarter platform. This was a great success raising over $10,000 and the company launched in May 2020.

“Having spent nine months researching, creating, sampling and testing this formula, it was super exciting to finally launch the company and get this new product into people’s hands,” says Aaron. 

The result of all the hard work is a high-quality blend of golden pea protein isolate that contains all nine amino acids with added digestive enzymes and a black pepper extract, called Bioperine, for easy digestion and absorption. The powder has great mixability and comes in three delicious flavors – Raw Cacao, Vanilla Coconut and Just Natural.

As the idea slowly became reality, thoughts naturally turned to branding and packaging. Aaron already knew that he needed to take advantage of digital print technology to best achieve his vision, remain agile and create maximum impact.

“We needed short lead times, but high-quality packaging. Our Honest Earth plant-based protein formula is a premium product and the packaging needed to reflect that,” explains Aaron. 

Digital Print Production Does the Job

ePac UK Silverstone is a full-service provider that works with brands of all sizes. The company delivers flexible packaging products such as high-quality roll stock and pouches printed on its HP Indigo 20000 digital presses and converted using class-leading finishing equipment. 

The company has a special affinity with start-ups and excels at helping them get to market fast with premium packaging delivered in just 10–15 business days, once artwork has been approved. The mix of low minimum orders, no printing plates costs and the ability to print multiple SKUs in one print run enables even the smallest business to burst onto the market with fantastic looking products that rival those of big global manufacturers.

“I first came across ePac after being let down an overseas supplier,” says Aaron, “and after speaking to Nick, I felt comfortable that the level of care and professionalism at ePac was going to meet my specific requirements.”

Aware of the flexibility digital print could give him, Aaron needed no convincing that he should choose to go down that route. “As a new brand, I knew that we would be adjusting our formula slightly on the first few runs, so we needed a solution that would allow us to change the information on pack without incurring huge costs,” he says. 

The protein powder packaging design format chosen for Honest Earth was stand-up pouches. Fully printed, they are ideal for maximizing brand impact and present a truly professional look. And with lots of nutritional information needed to go on the protein powder packaging bags, having the whole surface available for decoration, rather than just a small label, is another big plus.

Meeting of Minds

ePac has a strong sustainability ethos – its digital printing platform uses less energy, produces less waste and has a smaller carbon footprint than conventional printing technology. Customers can order on-demand, which helps keep obsolete packaging out of the landfill and this really resonated with Aaron: “We are very eco-conscious and I didn’t want to be subjected to huge MOQs and then end up with packaging wasted, so the ability to do smaller runs per flavor profile was a huge plus point when it came to be working with ePac.”

Having the protein powder pouches produced by a UK-based company was another key factor in the choice of supplier. “ePac matched my brand standards, which I felt we could elevate further by not only making our product in the UK, but also by having the packaging made on home soil at ePac’s new Silverstone facility,” he explains.

As he gets ready for launch, Aaron sums up his experience with ePac UK Silverstone: “They have a fantastic team, make quality products and they bend over backwards to stick to lead times. Without a doubt, ePac will be our long-term packaging partner and we explore more opportunities.”

“It has been a privilege to support The Honest Earth and work with Aaron to bring his vision to market,” says Nick Monk, Sales Director UK & Ireland and Managing Partner of ePac UK Silverstone. “This is a great example of how locally-produced digital print combined with our flexible packaging expertise offers the perfect solution for new innovative brands. We look forward to continuing the partnership with Aaron as he continues to grow his company.”

Do you want to make a big impact with professional-looking nutritional supplement packaging  produced by a company with a strong sustainability ethos? Contact us today to hear how we can help you.

Skratch Labs and ePac Deliver A Truly Unique Package Experience

As an official partner to EF Education First Pro Cycling, Skratch Labs wanted to create limited-edition packaging to celebrate the team’s competition in the Tour. To show team pride, they crafted stand-up pouches for their lemon & lime sports hydration drink mix that featured the metallic pink and blue look of the EF team’s jerseys. 

Since 2012, Skratch Labs has been selling sports nutrition products, always made from all real ingredients, designed to help athletes perform their best. To give its customers an even better user experience, the company began working with ePac Boulder in 2017 to revamp its packaging, upgrading to fully custom, high-quality stand-up pouches. This year, they took their dedication to sports performance a step further.

“We believe our customers will think this design is really special. They know the EF team and are excited about the Tour. We hope to drive excitement for the Tour by launching this limited-edition packaging,” says Elliot Freeman, VP, Marketing at Skratch Labs.

Limited-Edition Packaging Uses Mosaic Technology to Generate 10,000 Unique Designs

What really brings the drink mix’s packaging to Tour-level is the collaboration between ePac and HP’s Mosaic print technology. With Mosaic, each pouch in the entire print run features an exclusive color-shifting design, similar to the EF Pro Cycling jerseys, giving each individual pouch its own unique look. No two pouches are the same. 

Mosaic print technology is an algorithm that automatically generates a high number of unique graphic patterns from a single design, called a seed file. It works by rotating, zooming, and transposing the colors of that file to create unique individual designs. With the EF Pro Cycling jersey-inspired pouches, ePac was able to create 10,000 unique designs from just one seed file. 

This is the first time Skratch Labs has created packaging to match a sports team and the first time ePac has showcased the cutting-edge Mosaic technology. The response has been overwhelmingly positive, with customers and fans expressing their delight in the unique, limited-edition packaging. Skratch Labs and ePac both sell their products internationally, making this an ideal partnership to celebrate the Tour this summer.

“ePac technology and digital printing enables us to order short runs of limited-edition packaging, which gives us an edge over the competition,” says Freeman, “This is a great trial to see what short runs, limited edition, and special package printing can do for us.”

Because ePac is built around state-of-the-art digital printing technology, the company is focused on fast turnaround times and short to medium runs. And since there are never any plates to set up, brands of all sizes can enjoy custom variable printing, ideal for special, limited-edition projects like this one.

The new Skratch Lab packaging is only available for a limited time and is currently sold at select local Colorado bike shops and various retailers in the Boulder area, as well as online at Skratch Labs’ website.

Contact ePac today to see how we make your packaging a unique consumer experience.

CASE STUDY: Primal Noms

Custom Packaging Positions Primal Noms Keto Mug Cakes As The Market Leader

Primal Noms owners, Matt and Alli Owen, are on a quest to be the healthiest versions of themselves, and part of that quest is following the ketogenic, or keto diet. Because sweet cravings can be hard to ignore regardless of the type of diet you follow, they created Primal Noms, keto and paleo mug cakes that cook right in the microwave. Matt and Alli started the brand in Bakersfield, California in 2017, to bring healthy treats to people following the keto lifestyle. Today, they operate out of the sunny Denver, Colorado.

So, what are Primal Noms exactly? They are individual cake mixes sold in single-serve pouches. To make the mug cake, consumers simply tear open the pouch, pour the mix into a mug, add butter and an egg, and then microwave. 

In less than 2 minutes, a keto-friendly cake is ready to eat. We think it may be magic.

Today Primal Noms are available in four flavors and are packaged in single-serve digitally printed lay-flat pouches from ePac. They are sold on their website and on Amazon, as well as at some local stores in Denver.  

Choosing A Better Pouch Package

While initially designing the packaging for the cake mixes, Alli Owen knew that the lay flat pouch was the best option, especially for the single-serve market. Unsure if the brand was ready for custom packaging, Primal Noms was first sold in standard foil bags with self-applied sticker labels. The packaging worked for the time, but soon the company received some big news– it was chosen to be included in two different subscription boxes. While this was great news for the business, it meant that the company had to make a packaging upgrade.

Primal Noms’ original packaging: a foil pouch with a hand-applied sticker.

“We got into two subscription boxes, which gave us a huge boost in order amounts! It also gave us the confidence to go for custom packaging, which we had been wanting for a while. We weren’t sure we were ready for it, or big enough… but getting these big orders meant that the time was right,” says Alli Owen.

So upgrade, they did. What was once a standard bag with a hand-applied sticker label became a custom, high-quality, digitally printed, single-serve pouch. The pouch is created with tear notch film for easy and clean tearing. The matte, soft-touch finish provides a tactile experience for the user and the simple and clean design captures attention.

 “Since going with custom packaging, we’ve seen a huge shift in brand perception,” says Owen.

And as they say, perception is reality. 

“Especially with food, people eat with their eyes in a lot of ways. Having a beautiful package helps people to understand the value of your product. Of course, you have to have a good product, but packaging increases the perceived value of the product,” says Owen.

In addition to the positive change in brand perception, the company is enjoying time and cost savings with the custom packages, as well as a simpler process overall. Before, the team was printing the stickers and applying them by hand, which took up a lot of time. 

“Now it’s as easy as just placing an order. It’s saving us time and money, with a large decrease in staff hours. It’s also more cost-effective now, if you count the time it would take us to sticker each pouch,” says Owen.

The custom pouches from ePac feature an easy tear notch at the top of the pouch and a soft matte finish for ease of use and brand differentiation. And it’s not just the Primal Noms team that has noticed a difference. The brand receives a lot of feedback from consumers telling them how much they love how the package feels. They also see many consumers taking photos with the packages for Instagram. But most importantly, the custom packaging allowed the brand to branch out into other markets and gain exposure through the subscription boxes.

“If we hadn’t made the switch to custom, this wouldn’t be happening. And we wouldn’t have been able to be featured in subscription boxes,” notes Owen.

The Future is Bright for Primal Noms

Today Primal Noms is the leader in the market of keto cakes and is an actively growing brand. The company has big plans for the future, including taking the brand nationwide, selling the cakes in stores, launching three new flavors, and distributing the cakes in more subscription boxes. Even though the space is small, owner Alli Owen contributes their leader position to the packaging.  

“Custom packaging looks so much more professional and adds a lot of value that you don’t have in a foil bag. The new package has been great in terms of sales and brand development,” she says.

And Alli Owen knows that brand development is key to helping brands resonate with consumers, and keep them coming back for more. With digitally printed pouches, brand owners like Owen can enjoy 360° of graphics over the entire pouch, without being limited to a label, as well as better graphics overall.

“Now with the custom pouches we are able to include some of our brand story, which we weren’t able to with the stickers. Now people get to learn about the motivation, heart, and movement behind the brand. The pouches gave us a space for that,” says Owen.

The ePac Difference

Because ePac is a local company (with locations all across the U.S.), and the quality of the pouches is second to none, Owen says that working with ePac has been a breeze. She was even able to go and pick up her pouch order from the Boulder, Colorado office, which helped the brand get to market even faster.

“We were able to pick up our pouches earlier than they quoted us, which was great. And the quality control is really on point. Also, we had to change our package size last minute and ePac worked with us… The customer service has been wonderful,” says Owen.

With digital printing, companies like Primal Noms can get a quality package to market in a fast and cost-effective way. Simply put, high quality, digitally printed pouches deliver a better experience for packagers, and consumers. 

Ready to learn more about the digital difference? Contact us today!

The Design Features that Make Pouches the Best Option for Nutritional Supplement Packaging

An aging population and growing health concerns, including simply adopting a healthier lifestyle, are pushing the nutritional supplement market toward more growth. Consumers are busier than ever, and looking to easy ways to add better nutrition to their diets in the form of proteins, herbs, fatty acids, vitamins and energy supplements. The rise in lifestyle diseases, such as diabetes and obesity, are also ramping up sales.

The “North America Nutritional Supplement Market (2018-2023)” report from states that the nutritional supplement market was valued at USD 40.17 billion in 2017 and will experience a CAGR of 7.5% over the forecast period. North America is the second-largest market in the global nutritional supplements market after the Asia-Pacific.

The rise in demand for these types of products presents the opportunity for both product and package innovation.

Perfecting the Nutritional Supplement Package Design

Scour the nutritional supplement aisles and you’ll notice an uptick in pouches lining the shelves where the PET (polyethylene terephthalate) jug or bottle once reigned. Why? Pouches pack in a lot of benefits for packagers, consumers, and retailers alike. Not only are they taking up less prized shelf space, but they also have a slew of other benefits that we’re going to dive into.

First things first, pouches keep the product fresh.

The key to packaging nutritional supplements is maintaining potency and long shelf life. In order to do this, supplements and nutraceuticals have special packaging requirements, such as:

  • a dry environment
  • airtight closures
  • protection from humidity and light.

Enter the pouch. Pouches deliver barrier properties to keep the product inside safe from odors, and vapors and can be equipped with a tight seal. What’s more is that the availability of dark colors enables the packaging to be opaque, reducing exposure to light.

Supplement Package Features You Can’t Ignore

In addition to ensuring product freshness, a great package should communicate what the product is, how to use it, be tamper-evident, and when necessary, be childproof.

Package add-ons like a scoop or dispensing closure, help consumers engage with the brand and assist in the package standing out from the competition. The ability to add spouts, sliders and sliding zippers, resealable and press to close zippers or simple tear-notches offers cost-effective flexibility that sets flexible packaging apart from other forms of packaging.

Packaging Developed for Convenience On & Off the Shelf

Digital flexible packaging also delivers a strong shelf presence. Because of their slim design, pouches allow for maximum shelf space, generally fitting more product on the shelf than a rigid package. With more on the shelf, restock becomes less frequent. What’s more, pouches’ unbreakable and lightweight properties mean that they’re easier to ship, handle, store and restock with no risk of breaking the containers.

Consumers benefit from these attributes as well, as pouches take up less space at home, in the pantry, in the car, in a backpack, briefcase or purse. Pouches are easy to travel with to the gym, school or work and they’re easy to open and reclose.

To further feed the convenience that consumers crave, consumer-packaged goods companies are offering products in multiple sizes and formats: a large multiple-serving pouch for home use, and single-serve, pre-measured pouches for on-the-go consumption. These easily fit in the consumers’ pocket or bag, are easy to throw away, and they remove the effort of measuring.

Considering E-Commerce, Design & Sustainability

It’s no secret that consumers are buying more and more online. The grocery market, including fresh foods and supplements, is only growing as more consumers opt to shop from the comfort of their home.

In fact, according to Rakuten Intelligence, online vitamin and supplement sales are increasing 12% faster than the e-commerce average. Seventy-seven percent of vitamin and supplement sales are made through Amazon alone. With more and more sales coming from online, packagers must consider how their package is portrayed on a screen as well as on a shelf.

Whether purchased online or in store, a product’s packaging must stand out from the competition. The design should be eye-catching, informative and interesting. Digital package printing on a flexible package allows for 360 degrees of high-quality graphics, colors, and design. That means more room for supplement manufacturers to include nutritional information, branding, high impact colors, QR codes, and to share the company story.

Finally, packagers of any product are looking at sustainability as they make package material and process decisions. Consumers are aware, too, of how packaging plays a role in the conservation of resources. Nutritional supplements in pouches deliver the flexible packaging benefits of less waste, both in the disposal of the container and the production of the package. For more information on the sustainable benefits of flexible packaging, go here.

How Small to Medium Sized Supplement Businesses Can Stand Out

As more health concerns arise across all generations, and consumers look to make healthy and balanced nutrition a part of their routine, the supplement market will only grow. With this growth comes much opportunity to deliver more innovation to consumers, all while being cost-effective and maintaining a low inventory. How?

The manufacturing of flexible packaging uses less energy and fewer materials than pill bottles, blister packs and rigid containers, which makes them less expensive to produce, transport and store. Not only that, but digital printing enables small to medium-sized organizations to compete with large, more established organizations as short runs can be printed cost-effectively, as there are no plates or over-runs for inventory.

At ePac Flexible Packaging, we help Nutritional Supplement brands bring their packaging to market. Contact us today to get a quote.

CASE STUDY: Skratch Labs

After 5 years in business, Skratch Labs renamed its entire line of products and created entirely new packaging to make it easier for the customer to understand the product, as well as establish brand consistency. Although development took 10 months, this new product packaging offers many benefits:

  • Increased moisture barrier with enhanced zippers
  • Enhanced graphics and material
  • Single-serve packaging
  • Consistent structure of design cues and naming hierarchy
  • A brand refresh to focus on science and nature

Challenges Faced in the Redesign

Skratch Labs—a sports nutrition company based in Boulder, CO—had 35 SKUs involved in the redesign, including new products and products that were being reformulated. In the original design, the focus had been on the science of the product, highlighting the “Labs” in Skratch Labs, while only touching on the real fruit used as an ingredient. Today’s consumers are more focused on natural elements, which is why the new packaging had to reflect both science and nature. The goal of the new packaging was to make it easier for busy athletes to understand the product and be able to process the information on the packaging much quicker.

Consumer Feedback Inspired Design Attributes

Skratch Labs relied heavily on consumer feedback in the redesign. According Jeff Donaldson, VP of Marketing for Skratch: “It wasn’t only about the outside of the packaging, but about the usability and storage. Consumers wanted a more “grippy” zipper and better functionality out of the packaging, such as stand-up pouches and single-serve bars. We also wanted to make the design as refreshing and inspiring as we could. There was an opportunity to improve the appearance and functionality of our packaging, so Skratch Labs partnered with Zach Lee Designs and ePac Flexible Packaging, both local Boulder companies”.

Selecting the Right Partners

Donaldson highlights the decision to choose the right designer and packaging manufacturer in the redesign success. Added Donaldson: “The overall brand style was designed by Zach Lee, founder of Zach Lee Designs in Boulder, CO. Zach is not only a designer, but is a cyclist and lives the lifestyle of the core audience. By switching to ePac to manufacture the packaging, Skratch Labs has the ability to print digitally and use multiple textures on the design”.  The new product packaging includes several unique features that enhance the consumer experience, including:

  • Zippers that improve the moisture barrier
  • Packaging that’s easy to tear open
  • Contrasting soft-touch treatment with metallic patterns
  • Bold colors and imagery to make the flavor identifiers more visible

“We work with multiple packaging manufacturers because of the variety of SKUs, but the bulk of the packaging was manufactured by ePac, a company that offers digital printing, laminating, and pouch making. The biggest reason we selected ePac was their ability to print digitally and avoid the cost of plates on 35 SKUs, while having the ability to use multiple textures with the designs. This was a new relationship for Skratch Labs and one that resulted in expectations being exceeded.”

About ePac

ePac is built around state-of-the-art digital printing technology, focused on rapid turnaround time and short to medium run length jobs. ePac’s printing process is eco-friendly, uses no printing plates, and enables customers to print to demand, thus reducing inventory and obsolescence.