Organic foods have experienced a significant growth in recent years which can be seen in Germany which is now the largest market in Europe and in England which is the third largest. Denmark although is the country with the highest consumption of organic products per person. The Danish government wants to expand the export of organic foods, but how can this come true with two large competitors on a growing market? How does a smaller country compete with larger competitors in the market for organic products? A way to compete and differentiate products from others is by packaging design and the different elements on it, which leads to the main question: Does a universal packaging design for organic products exist? This will be investigated with focus on brand name and logo, claims, and nonverbal elements. These elements are often on the front of the packaging which is the first the consumer sees and therefore interesting in this respect. The three countries are selected for the aforementioned reasons as well as they all are Western European and close geographically. The empirical element here is the packaging for organic porridge oats from each country, selected randomly and with variety with nine packages for Denmark, eight from England and six from Germany. Porridge oats is chosen because it is a product with potential. The three research areas are very different which calls for an interdisciplinary method to make a comparative analysis of the relevant elements on the packages. The first area is brand name and logo which calls for theories with both branding and judicial background. The use of private labels is popular in all three countries and logos are generally with a little extra visual element to support the written brand name. To show the brand is organic with the word embedded in the brand name is mostly used in Germany and England. With that said the logos are very different from the very simple to the more colourful which makes them more easily recognizable. In the next area of claims, they can be divided into three groups which are: labels, “Økologisk”/”Bio”/”Organic”, and the rest. Labels are mostly popular in Denmark with the use of the Danish certification for organic products Ø-label and the European leaf. The German Bio-Siegel is widely used on the German packages and in England there are very few. In the use of the word “Organic” though, England mostly uses a large font, which Germany also does, and Denmark is almost opposite in the use with equal-sized or smaller font than the product description. The rest of the claims are not popular to show the product is organic, but the English packages have a lot of others to tell where the product is from and how it tastes. In this area Denmark uses labels to show the product is organic, where the English uses a large font for the word and Germany is somewhere between. The last area of nonverbal elements can be divided into two parts: one for illustrations and one for colour. The illustrations generally Findes der et universelt emballagedesign til økologiske fødevarer? 2 contain the product itself in different forms: porridge oats in a pile, porridge oats in a bowl or oats ears. With a background in semiotics we see the illustrations are mostly iconic because the product is illustrated in other various ways than just the porridge oats. The colours mostly used are white and green. With a background in graphic design we see that those colours connote purity, life and nurture, which are good virtues for an organic product. In conclusion we see that overall there are tendencies for a universal packaging design for organic porridge oats. Logos have a visual element to support the written brand name, claims which tell about the organic product in words are not popular, and finally the illustrations mostly show the product in some form and the colours agreed on in all countries are white and green. In regards to the possible export from Danish exporters to Germany and England these are elements to take into consideration before designing a new package for organic products.
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