There was a time in my life, not too long ago, where I consumed a lot of chewing gum. And I mean a lot. It was kind of compulsive, actually, and in retrospect, probably not healthy mentally or physically. Anyway, my preferred variety was Orbit in Cinnamint, so I was thrilled when I saw that Orbit had adopted an alternative package design for compulsive gum chewers such as myself: the chewing gum jar. Read more…
Orbit’s chewing gum jar was fantastic. It had two different access methods, much like those spice bottles where you open one flap to sprinkle just a tad and another flap to get a spoonful. You could open a little window and pop a piece or two into your hand, or flip the whole top open and have access to all 55 pieces of sugarfree obsession.
It wasn’t long before that excitement turned into heartbreak as I realized that the jar-shaped package was only available for Bubblemint and Spearmint, ostensibly the most popular flavors. I would either have to switch flavors or settle for the standard chewing gum package design.
Limitations of the chewing gum jar package design
What didn’t occur to me at the time were the limitations of the chewing gum jar or tub format. It was great to have a large stash of gum on hand at your desk or in the car, for example. The lid was fairly secure, although probably not ideal for being carried in a purse or backpack, as it could flip open by mistake. And if you are the type of person who is content to chew on just a single piece of gum at a time, getting only one out could be a little tricky. If you use the window, you’re likely going to have an overenthusiastic second piece fall into your hand. And going in to grab isn’t super hygienic, especially if you’re sharing.
Not to mention, basically any access method you used to get into this new package design would require two hands. And finally, you don’t have the benefit of the gum wrapper to dispose of the remains later.
Well, necessity is the mother of invention. And in a society where we are constantly on the go, a more convenient version of the gum jar seemed like a necessity. So two tweaks to the existing design are being experimented with.
The first is from the South Korean company Orion Confectionery. They added a cute little push-button mechanism that will make a piece of gum pop up through the center of the lid.
The second comes from a user experience designer named Gonglue Jiang, who currently works at Google. His goal was to solve the problem of people littering unwrapped gum. With chewing gum jars, if you have immediate access to a trash can, that’s not a problem, but it makes things complicated for people on the go.
So, he designed “Green Seeds”, an innovative package design that includes adhesive wrappers and a bottom compartment to temporarily store chewed, wrapped gum until you get to a trash can.
What do you think of these additions to the chewing gum jar package design? Let us know in the comments!