Packaging

Unveiling the Impact of Packaging Colour on Plant-Based Meat Consumption

While plant-based meats present various advantages, such as health and sustainability benefits, not all consumers readily choose them over their animal-based counterparts. The reasons for this hesitancy lie in persistent barriers to consumption.

Food choices are influenced by common factors like taste, price, and health. However, the visual appeal of packaging also plays a crucial role, shaping consumer perceptions of these barriers.

Remarkably, simply using appealing colours in product packaging has the power to reshape consumer behaviour and prompt a shift toward plant-based meat.

When used in packaging, colour can attract attention, create positive associations, and enhance brand recognition.[1] Thus, it is crucial to understand how colour influences consumers’ purchase decisions in the context of plant-based meat products, particularly given the lack of research on specific colours used in plant-based branding.

LikeMeat pack shot
Image courtesy of ProVeg International

In its latest New Food Hub article, ProVeg International summarises the main learnings from its new report on colour psychology: Power of Colour – Nudging Consumers Towards Plant-Based Meat Consumption. The exciting report took a selection of packaging colours to determine which are most appealing to customers in the context of plant-based meat products, looking at 1,200 respondents from the US and UK.

The two countries were chosen to ensure a diverse perspective, encompassing distinct cultural contexts and geographical regions. To investigate the impact of colours on consumer behaviour, participants were randomly divided into six groups. Each group was shown a different colour of plant-based meat packaging (green, blue, orange, purple, red, or yellow).

The colour of the packaging matters

The research revealed that colour significantly influences consumer behaviour and willingness to purchase plant-based meat products.

A substantial 65% of survey respondents said that colours have an impact on their purchase decision, illustrating the untapped potential of the use of colour in packaging.

ProVeg packaging report
Image courtesy of ProVeg International

ProVeg recommendation: Harness the power of colour in plant-based meat packaging differentiation to outshine your competitors and evoke the desired consumer responses.

Green suggests health, freshness, and eco-friendliness

 In the world of plant-based meat, green symbolises health, freshness, and eco-friendliness. An impressive 75% of UK respondents linked green packaging with healthiness, 78% with eco-friendliness, and 75% with safety.

In the US, a lower percentage of respondents associated green with healthiness – 58% – while 69% linked it with naturalness, and 68% linked it with eco-friendliness.

ProVeg recommendation: Embrace green – in moderation – in your packaging, only if you want to communicate sustainability and health benefits. Incorporate visuals of fresh produce, natural elements, and trusted sustainability certifications to increase resonance with environmentally-conscious consumers.

Plant-based Chic'ken Chopped Fajita
©RollinGreens

Use colour effectively on plant-based meat packaging

ProVeg’s report found that packaging colours have a real impact on consumers’ choices and their preference for plant-based meat products. Utilising choice-architecture principles, especially employing captivating colours strategically, can revolutionise the promotion of plant-based meat consumption.

Head to the New Food Hub to read the full article and access all the expert recommendations inspired by the report. These strategies will enhance alignment with consumer preferences, elevating your brand’s identity.


Need more support on your plant-based strategy? ProVeg’s experts are only an email away, [email protected]

[1] Labrecque, L. I., Patrick, V. M., & Milne, G. R. (2013). The marketers’ prismatic palette: A review of color research and future directions. Psychology & Marketing, 30(2), 187-202.

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