The season of wrapped presents serves as a good reminder to retail executives: Packaging is as important as product.

New York Times spotlights product packaging this holiday season

While much of the country is focused on buying and receiving gifts, a recent article in The New York Times highlights the packaging that encases those items. Gary Cross, a modern history professor and the author of "Packaged Pleasures: How Technology and Marketing Revolutionized Desire," writes in the newspaper's Op-Ed section that the ways in which material goods are wrapped and presented matters far more to American consumers than they often realize. 

This penchant for packaging dates back centuries. According to The Ohio State University researchers, the first commercial paperboard box was made in England in 1817. 

"By the 1880s, merchandisers learned that … the labeling with colorful logos coordinated with massive advertising in magazines, newspapers and on billboards created special meanings that made the ordinary extraordinary, almost like the beribboned gift," writes Cross. "This has been the hallmark of the twin occupations of the merchandiser and the advertiser ever since."

Nearly 200 years after the first commercial paperboard box, many luxury, artisan food and drink manufacturers still use cotton paper to package their most exclusive products. Here at Reich Paper, we provide our clients with the finest, traditionally crafted cardstock that imbues high-end products with the sense of elevated quality they deserve.

According to Cross, beginning with the wrapped holiday presents of childhood, we are conditioned to appreciate an item's presentation as much as the thing itself. It's therefore imperative that your packaging actively build and reinforce your brand. We recommend the following lines for food and drink products:

  • CT: The highest quality translucent vellum paper is additive free and naturally grease resistant. 
  • ODEON: Felt-pressed, richly textured specialty paper that folds beautifully. 
  • SAVOY: One of our most popular series, this luxurious, 100 percent cotton paper exudes quality. 

This holiday season, remember: As any successful marketing executive knows, it's not the thought that counts — it's the packaging.