Organisers of the upcoming PIDA Awards have announced a new special award category for accessible packaging design.

The Australian Institute of Packaging (AIP) and Packaging New Zealand have introduced the new Accessible Packaging Design category to their annual Packaging Innovation & Design Awards program.

The Accessible Packaging Design Special Award is designed to recognise packaging that is accessible, intuitive, easy-to-open and innovative and is offered in partnership with Arthritis Australia and Arthritis New Zealand.

Arthritis Australia CEO Andrew Mills says consumers living with arthritis have often described the many different impacts of this chronic condition, with hard-to-open packaging among the things that make them feel disempowered.

“The experience of struggling with difficult-to-open packaging can be physically painful and emotionally draining to them, especially when trying to open the daily staples, such as milk, jam jars or yogurt tubs,” Mills says.

“Accessible packaging is vital to providing consumers with independence, who should be able to prepare meals for their families without a battle with packaging.”

Arthritis New Zealand CEO Philip Kearney says hard to open packaging makes people, not only those suffering with arthritis but from all ages and backgrounds, think twice about what they purchase.

“As this number grows, consumers will become more selective in their purchases and most will look for products that makes their day to day lives easier. From a brand perspective this is an important element for all manufacturers and suppliers to consider.

“Arthritis New Zealand wants to take constructive steps to encourage industry to make accessibility of packaging a must have and this has led us to co-sponsor the important award. Arthritis New Zealand will be actively promoting good packing design to the 670,000 people with arthritis in New Zealand.”

The 2019 PIDA Awards have also introduced new category for labelling and decoration. The Design Innovation of the Year Award – Labelling and Decoration will recognise organisations that have designed innovative labelling and decoration for packaging.

The judges are looking for the addition of content to a pack that creates a unique or innovative appearance, function or communication. This may include labels, sleeves, self-adhesive, wet gum, in-mould flexible labels, flexowrap, embossing, adhesive embellishments, tags, coding/markings, etching, directly applied inks or by any other similar, or combination of printing processes.

Entries are now open for the 2019 inaugural Accessible Packaging Design Special Award and will close on the 8 March. Entry forms and criteria are available here.

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