“A tin will always be reused even if it’s for a short period of time,” Mike Walter, managing director of The Box told ConfectioneryNews. “The brand is being maintained and used by the consumer on a daily basis.”
The company’s in-house research surveyed 200 consumers and found 80% of people reused tin packs.
The Box’s main segment for its tin packaging is currently coffee and tea, but confectionery packs now account for 30% of its sales and that proportion is rising.
Dark chocolates in tin boxes
“We have seen growth in confectionery. We’ll have our best year ever for confectionery related products," said Walter. "There’s a big switch to premium chocolate – 60-75% cocoa – and we are seeing a lot of premium chocolate manufacturers coming to us.”
“It adds value to the proposition but also longevity for the brand because tin packaging is reused.”
The Box supplies standard rectangle and cylindrical tins, but has also made novelty shapes in the form of hand grenades, trucks, banana and Fabergé eggs. “Any shape can be created – there are no restrictions. It’s exciting what you can create now," said Walter.
Keep it simple
However, he urged confectioners to keep it simple. “If you try to use a design which is a specific shape it will be less likely to be reused. Cylindrical tins, rectangles and basic squares are more likely to be reused.”
Though The Box has seen a rise in smaller premium chocolate companies moving to tin, larger manufacturers such as Mars and Cadbury have moved away from tin for some Christmas ranges.
“I think they’ve taken away the reusability, but they’ve done it for cost reasons,” said Walter. He conceded it would be cheaper to use flexible packaging, but claimed the cost difference was limited.
“I wouldn’t suggest there is a great deal of difference and on small volumes, tins could be more advantageous.”
Printing and pack lines
“Packaging into a tin box is no different to packing into plastic or other packaging options,” he added.
However, he said that manufacturers may need to make extra floor space for the tins.
The tins The Box produce have a food-safe varnish coating, which means there’s no need for secondary packaging.
“Tin is the safest form of food packaging you can get – there’s no way anything can affect the integrity of the products, not like plastics or cardboard,“ said Walter.
“The quality of the print is outstanding,” he added. He said tin packs could support high resolution gravure printing, embossing and printing over raised surfaces.