On November 2nd, the jury for the 22nd edition of the Formes de Luxe Awards gathered via videoconference for the first time. The virtual format in no way impeded the lively debates on the value, pros and cons of each competing product. In the end, 16 were given an award; we reveal the winners next week.
The current health crisis is calling on our power of reinvention and the 2020 edition of the Formes de Luxe Awards jury deliberation day was no exception. This year, for the first time, our members came together via videoconference to judge more than 50 products in the running for the coveted industry award. Alissa Demorest, Editor in Chief of Formes de Luxe and Luxe Packaging Insight and member of the jury, on site with the competing products, was tasked with being the jury’s eyes, hands and ears and described each product’s material composition, how they felt to the touch, whether they were heavy or light, if the various components fit together perfectly or if there was room for improvement, the sound and feel of the closures, the quality of the decoration… Not an easy exercise, but one that allowed the jury members to form an informed opinion of each pack.
Perhaps because they didn’t have the products in hand, the members had a flurry of questions in line with the judging criteria: what exactly is innovative (hasn’t this been done before?), how does it play into the issue of sustainability (are we being greenwashed here?), is this a quality translation of the brand’s DNA, what exactly is the technical challenge (is there any)?
No surprise here: sustainability takes center stage
In light of the growing importance of sustainability issues in the industry, jury members were more sensitive than ever to this aspect of the equation this year and analyzed the numerous green claims in detail (recyclable, biodegradable, second use, lighter weight…) to be sure they were rooted in truth. Many were, and some were not. The jury noted several “positive first steps”: brands (and their suppliers) who took risks when it came to using less energy-consuming formats, new gestures or materials, and encourage them to push the sustainable development experiment even further.
What did come out of this daylong exercise is that brands and suppliers are focusing more than ever on creating packaging that is more virtuous. “The days of the heavy, multi-material pack with components that cannot be recycled or reused is over,” noted one jury member. “We’ve seen lots of interesting initiatives to make packs more sustainable, but there is still a long road ahead”.
16 winners to be announced
The jury selected 16 winners for this edition, but not every single category got a winner. Despite the video format, discussions were lively, engaging and quite a lot of fun. That said, we are all looking forward to a 2021 edition where the jury members can gather together around the same table.
We’ll be revealing the winners on Luxe Packaging Insight next week, so stay tuned!