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Students experiment with sustainable packages

About a hundred last-year marketing students have invented concepts to make the Boni Selection packages more sustainable. Twenty small groups set to work with the packaging of bananas, chocolate buns, detergent and bottled water. The challenge was to reconcile sustainability with a/o brand image, group values and functional issues such as possibility to be stacked. Colruyt Group sponsored the assignment because of its own interest in sustainability and to gain insight in the view of young people.​

Complex story 

The students were not only challenged to make the packaging more sustainable and to make it smaller, thinner, drop it or make it from different material. They also had to respect the image of Boni Selection and Colruyt Group, and take practical issues such as cost price, strength of the packaging, stacking on pallet, transport, place on the shelf, etc. into account. “We are pleasantly surprised by the many original and innovative solutions”, says marketeer Veerle Poppe. “In any case the exercise clearly shows that sustainability is not a matter of noble principles, but a complex story without simple solutions.”


Colruyt Group provided samples of the products, briefed the students and was on the jury. All participants were rewarded with chocolate and the best ideas with a package of Belgian products from Boni. “We cooperated because we are intensively working on making our private labels sustainable”, explains Veerle Poppe. “The students’ concepts give us a lot of inspiration. It is interesting to us to know what young people think about sustainability. Indeed, they are future customers and maybe even co-workers.” The assignment fitted in with the International Week of the Brussels college Ephec, where apart from their own last-year students, another 60 foreign guest students participated.