It has been a positively banner year for the field of coffee design, and for the Coffee Design feature series here on Sprudge. To round things off at the end of 2023, we’re taking a closer look at the redesigned packaging of Fernwood Coffee, a roaster and cafe company based in Victoria, BC. Fernwood’s new packaging expresses a unique POV. “The goal was to create a collection of iconic designs that would stand out on the shelf,” says Fernwood Coffee co-owner Ben Cram, “as well as look good in people’s homes and when they’re outdoors enjoying life.”

We spoke more to Fernwood Coffee co-owner Ben Cram to learn more.

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Who designed the packaging?

The packaging was designed by Glasfurd & Walker, a boutique design agency in Vancouver, Canada whom we have partnered since our rebrand in 2013.

When did the new design launch?

The designs are just out, launching on our website in late November and rolling out to stores now.

How long did the design process take?

The design process happened over several months—whilst we were bringing our design language in line with our single-origin and core brand it was a big change for our Fairtrade and retail line. We took time testing and refining each design until we were 100% happy.

fernwood coffee

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What were some of the goals for the new look?

We wanted to modernize the look and align it with the core Fernwood brand that sells online and offers our Single Origin Coffees. The goal was to create a collection of iconic designs that would stand out on the shelf as well as look good in people’s homes and when they’re outdoors enjoying life.

Tell us about some of the details in the design.

Our design language is modern and graphic. We love the idea coffee is a drop of luxury and comfort that can make you feel at home anywhere. Our designs are inspired by fashion and the concept that a great pattern, an iconic colour can stand and make your day better. Each coffee has a unique pattern that runs along the edges of each bag, which then extends onto the front of the pack to help create a signature look and colour for each coffee style.

In our quest for distinction, we moved away from conventional coffee market paradigms. Unlike the prevalent nostalgic and heritage-driven design palette dominating the Canadian coffee landscape, we sought something different.

The typography is modern and minimal—clean to read and easy to navigate. We want our designs to stand out and be iconic through the use of bold colours. The quality of the design is modern and contemporary.

What kind of materials are used in the new packaging?

The materials used in the packaging are the matte finish coating / 48ga PET/ Ink / adh / 28ga Aluminum foil / 4.5mil LLDPE.

The bag has a matte finish that gives it an elegant look and a soft texture. To ensure food safety, we used reverse print to sandwich the ink between the first and second layers. The aluminum foil that we used in the bag provides excellent barrier features that keep the roasting beans fresh and protect them from light. Moreover, we used 4.5mil LLDPE to make the bag strong and durable.

The block bottom bag style is the latest and most popular technology used in the flexible industry. The five-panel design provides clear information to our customers. The block bottom offers excellent shelf-standing features. Additionally, we designed the barcode at the block bottom panel to make it easier for the grocery clerk to scan the barcode. We used a pocket zipper to help the end user reclose the bag. The pocket zipper also offers full-open gussets, making it easier and faster to fill the beans during production. Our bag has top and bottom rounded corners, which prevent it from rubbing against other bags during transportation, thus avoiding tearing off the shopping bags and human skin.

We chose TricorBraun Flex for its professionalism and quality. They are a GMP-certified company/facility with a team of multiple full-time Quality Control personnel. Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) ensures full traceability, safety consistent manufacturing practices, and third-party certification. TricorBraun Flex laboratory conducts multiple tests before delivering the bags to our door.

fernwood coffee

Where is this available to purchase?

Ferwnoodcoffee.com is the best place. You can order online and see a stockist list which covers Canada and the PNW in the states.

Thank you.

Coffee Design is a feature series on Sprudge by Zachary Carlsen. Read more Coffee Design on Sprudge. 

Photos courtesy of @momentsofwild