Wednesday, November 7, 2007

good for the sol

We have been working with a new company out of Nicaragua called Sol Simple. They have a whole line of packaged good products. I cannot begin to tell you how awesome this company is. They employ only single mothers. They are fair trade. They have this incredible solar drying technology (a roof with millions of holes that harnesses the heat of the sun). They are organic and kosher.

Being that this project is more grass roots than Madison Avenue, we thought we'd do a little research using the blog. Below you will see dried fruit, cashew and coffee packaging. The window with the food will be clear, showing the actual product. Please give us your opinion. Three main questions we need answered:

1. Which package do you prefer, the solid or striped?

2. Does the motto "Good for the earth, body and soul" speak to you?

3. Is there anything to change, add or subtract?

You can email us at Or comment on the blog. Either way, please give us your opinion. Everyone is an expert ... we all buy food.

And pass this post along anyone who might want to share their opinion with us. Let the people speak!
(click on any image to get a closer look)


Towles said...

Jupe, I really like this. I like the logo and the tag. One comment about the back of the package, though. Should it be SolSimple "use" or SolSimple "uses"? Or, should it say Members of the SolSimple community/co-op/society/enterprise use? Otherwise, I think it looks fantastic. For some reason, I especially like the cashew packaging.

Clark&Michele said...

I like the Solid Bag.

The Tag line is nice, but I'd prefer something like "Where the Earth, Body and Soul are made One" or something to that effect. Taglines starting with "Good For" I feel are on the verge of being overused.

The term "organic" is now as ubiquitous as "Global warming" and the complexities of US marketing efforts seem to have bent the word "organic" into multiple interpretations. I assume now that the vast majority of average Joe/Jane's don't truly understand what organic truly means or that Organic foods get the label in the US by adhering to certain production standards. Since organic certifications in the US are clear, yet marketing can twist the message, I suggest you add facts on the bag to educate your consumers.

I would include a distinct description of your organic farming practices (no pestisides, fertilizers, addtives, chemical ripening, food irridation, gentically modified plants et al). Make it rosy, but shoot straight. Consider the demographics of your target consumer and tailor the facts to the their expecations.

Devub said...

As always, love the concept and feel as this company is quite honorable in its mission. However, I am not overly impressed with the packaging. Too slick, too corporate looking for my tastes. Perhaps it would look different if the package was in front of me but overall it just doesn't sit well with me. Perhaps since I know what this business and project is all about I consider it a noble business ambition that also is working for the good of others and therefore the packaging, for me, doesn't capture what I consider a unique company. Instead it looks like a large corporations attempt to capture a share of a market audience. This would be my initial reaction to seeing this product on the shelf although I don't think the package itself would ever prevent me from buying something that I enjoy.

Jen said...

I am so impressed! You are my heroes for bringing this to fruition. I hope that someday you can bring this business to Africa. I am working with hundreds of single mothers returned from the war trying to find work that could really benefit from this concept

I really like the solid packaging. Its simple yet hip. But I would like to see images of the women working and maybe short stories on the womens lives. I dont think many people understand the local capacity your business is building and the empowerment it is bringing to the women involved. It would be neat to hear those stories.

And I am not crazy about the slogan, I like the concept but without knowing what the product is I would think it is promoting organic body products.

Will said...

Will! Still can't believe you're doing this - it's great.

So, my thoughts:
Both packages look great but after much internal debate, I have to say I prefer the solid packaging. It's cleaner and fits better with the "simple" theme.

I agree with the comments above that it is "slick and corporate" looking but I disagree with the implications. I believe it looks sophisticated and fashionable with an altruistic bent - enough to appeal to the mass market.

I know there are varying degrees of "organic" and that a lot of products these days bill themselves as organic. Does your product adhere to stricter standards than most?

My initial reaction to the "unsweetened" comment on the front of the fruit package was negative - it made me think bland. I think a substitute that implies "naturally sweet" or "no added sugar" would work well.

On the back side of the packaging I think the word "exportation" should be changed to simply "export" or something similar. Why? Maybe because the print on my screen is small, maybe because I skimmed over it too quickly or maybe because my mind is in the wrong place, but I read it as "exploitation" the first time.

Do you guys operate in or support a specific community? Could the name of that community be worked in to foster a greater sense of (not sure what the word I'm looking for is) - connection??

Just some thoughts - but what do I know? Anyhow it looks and sounds amazing - great job guys!

oijoy photo - THE BLOG said...

I love the striped design.
I'm getting hungry just looking at packaging.

I'd like to see a little salt on those nuts...kidding.

jillomazoo said...

I like the solid packaging and agree that it seems simpler.

The Europeans seem to be big on the terms Bio, Nature, and Sport (depending on the product, this often gives us a good laugh). We're a bit skeptical of how much truth in advertising there is here.

Anyway, the packaging is lovely, very enticing. Definitely makes me want to pick it up.