Ernest to the Rescue: Packaging Delivers Healthy Snacks to Office

October 28, 2014

The Problem

If you’re like many employees, some time in the midafternoon you get hangry — that terrible place where your hunger turns to anger. Like a wild animal, you scavange through the office breakroom for something to eat. If you’re lucky, you find some stale junk food snack that’s 130% sugar. This, of course, gives you a buzzy sugar rush. Then, you crash and spend the rest of the afternoon sleeping under your desk.

What a wonderfully productive afternoon.

SnackNation, a division of Nutrition Without Borders, delivers healthy snacks to these suffering offices They charged Ernest Packaging to create a sample box that would look fun and appealing to new customers.

“Making boxes that really popped and were cool that would speak to an office manager was really important to us,” John Pinto, Director of SnackNation, said.

We eat with our eyes first, so the sample shipper box called for an appetizing aesthetic. (We have some experience with shipping snacks!)

Ernest’s Solution

Ernest had already created SnackNation’s office display box and monthly shipper, but both Pinto and creative director Travis Miller wanted Ernest’s help with a sample box for prospective customers.

“From a design standpoint, this is our first contact with prospects because they connect with us on online initially,” Miller said. “We really wanted our first impression to make an impact.”


Miller and Ernest’s Customer Relationship Manager Ryan Boring got to work. They knew that each box needed to include 20 snacks. The snacks needed to be shipped securely and presented in a really cool way. As we wrote about earlier this year, packaging is crucially important for B2B branding.

“The inner dividers were a cool feature we came up with to help separate the snacks,” Boring said. “And the best part is that it didn’t require extra tooling or increase their box cost.”

Boring and Miller literally just started cutting up boxes, playing with it and making it work. Miller hand drew an image on a box and passed it Ernest’s design team who turned into a CAD file.

“It took just a few prototypes.” Miller said. “And it was a pretty quick process.”

Pinto says that the feedback on the new boxes has been great. Initially they had only sent out plain white boxes.

“Now they see this bright green box,” Pinto said. “It really draws them in. They’re opening it almost instantaneously, which is nice because it sits on the office manager’s desk for a few days. It’s been really great.”

SnackNation envisions a nation of healthy offices. For every box of snacks sent to an office, they donate a week’s worth of multi-nutritional packs with essential nutrients to children in need and to tackle malnutrition in developing countries.  According to the SnackNation blog, actress and healthful mom Molly Sims included SnackNation as a way to be a mindful mama.

Whether you intend to or not, your packaging is sending a message to your audience. Ernest can help you make sure that it’s saying the right thing. Contact us today for help thinking outside the box.