Packaging 101 with The Packaging Chic

Packaging 101 with The Packaging Chic

We all know that packaging is an important business decision, especially in the food industry. Today, Sharon Eucce AKA the Packaging Chic, joins us to talk about this crucial component of getting a product shelf-ready. Sharon is a value-add packaging broker who focuses on beauty and specialty food products and has helped countless clients create affordable, eye-catching custom packaging.

In this episode, Sharon discusses how the packaging industry has been affected by the pandemic and why. She describes 2020 as a hard time for the industry in many ways, but with a significant upside with the rise of small companies and the e-commerce boom. The conversation then moves onto the digital printing revolution and how its increased access for smaller brands looking to make unique packaging. Sharon also offers us insights into other developments in packaging, such as the evolution of structural packaging materials. After this, Sharon touches on an emerging topic in the packaging space–sustainability–and why companies need to define what this value means to them rather than taking a one-size-fits-all approach. Wrapping up, we look to the future, where Sharon shares some of the exciting things she has in the pipeline. Be sure to tune in today!

Get to Know Sharon:

Name: Sharon Eucce (pronounced YOU see)
Location: San Diego CA
Years in the food industry: Been producing packaging for chocolate/confectionery brands since 2008
Favorite Food: hard to choose - playing favorites isn't my strong suit but snacks come to mind: peanut butter-filled pretzels, brie and granny smith apples, grapes, oooohhh also just thought of Spanish cheeses and tapas. See what I mean? Can't choose just one.
Least Favorite Food: liver or tongue
The last thing I ate and loved: my creamed spinach made with compound butter, creme fraiche and parmesan

Key Points Mentioned in this Episode:

  • Get to know Sharon and what her company Packaging Chic does.

  • How the packaging industry was affected by the pandemic and the impacts on Sharon’s business specifically.

  • The difference between independent and integrated packaging companies.

  • Why digital printing has been the biggest change in the packaging space over the last few years.

  • Details about the box Sharon did for Ivy Park, Beyoncé’s brand with Addidas.

  • Some of the exciting developments in the structural packaging space.

  • How Sharon approaches pricing and why she likes when clients bring their own ideas.

  • The importance of getting clear on what sustainable packaging means to your brand.

  • Stories of client Sharon worked with where they had to print on Kraft paper.

  • The value of real mockups so you can get a sense of what packaging looks like.

  • Why Kraft-looking packaging does not always mean recyclable.

  • What’s on the horizon for Sharon and Packaging Chic.

Links Mentioned in this Episode:

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Click Here for Full Transcript:

[0:00:00] Sharon Eucce:
We want to have all sustainability. Okay, well what does that mean to you? Are you talking about “I don’t want to use any plastic?” Are you talking about, “I want it to be fully recyclable” you really have to drill down to, what does it mean to you as a brand that your packaging is sustainable?

[0:00:13.4] Georgiana Dearing:
Welcome to The Virginia Foodie Podcast. Where we lift the lid on the craft food industry and tell the stories behind that good food, good people and good brands that you know and love. If you’ve ever come across a yummy food brand and wondered, “How do they do that? How did they turn that recipe into a successful business?” Then we’ve got some stories for you.

[0:00:46.4] Georgiana Dearing:
Hello foodies. Today, I’m taking a dive into packaging with my friend Sharon Eucce. Sharon is the Packaging Chic, a value-add broker with a focus on beauty and specialty food products. She’s helped foodies like San Franola, Sauce Goddess Gourmet and countless chocolatiers, create affordable and eye-catching custom packaging that delivers sales at the shelf.

We met years ago at a packaging conference in Chicago and we just clicked. I appreciate Sharon’s “Let me teach you what I know” attitude and her sensible approach to creating affordable luxury. If you’re curious about ways food brands can stand out at the shelf, then listen in as we nerd out a bit about new technology and as an insider’s bonus, Sharon answers my questions about the box she once made for Beyonce.

[0:01:44.8] Georgiana Dearing:
Hi Sharon, welcome to the podcast.

[0:01:47.1] Sharon Eucce:
Well, hi George, thank you so much. I mean, really, this is fun to be here because we met so long ago and do you remember what year it was? I think it was 2009.

[0:02:00.3] Georgiana Dearing:
I think so, I think it was 2009 in Chicago because you’re joining us in California, right?

[0:02:06.8] Sharon Eucce:

[0:02:07.4] Georgiana Dearing:
I’m in Virginia, and we met in Chicago at a packaging conference, which is why I had you on because packaging is really central to some of the business decisions that my food clients have to make and I thought, you would be a great person to talk to about all the decisions. Can you take a second though and give our audience a real explanation of who you are and what you do?

[0:02:32.3] Sharon Eucce:
Yes, of course. My name is Sharon Eucce. My company that I run is called Packaging Chic and I’m based in San Diego and we work with established product companies that wants smooth, consistent quality packaging like boxes, bags, labels, pouches. We play mostly in the beauty and specialty food industries. Of course, that includes chocolate, there’s a lot of crossover to eating chocolate and cosmetics, don’t you think?

[0:03:00.6] Georgiana Dearing:
I bet.

[0:03:02.8] Sharon Eucce:
We have fun helping our client’s products stand out on the shelf and so that that inspires their customers to buy more. I’ve been doing it since 2007, been in packaging, yeah. So fun.

[0:03:20.1] Georgiana Dearing:
Your role in this. Are you doing the design or are you a broker per se? Can you explain that a bit?

[0:03:27.3] Sharon Eucce:
Yes, of course. I mean, if you had to boil it down to something, I am a broker or a box rep. That’s kind of where my company evolves was I panicked when I got this – I took this job because something else, well, I was being laid off after a merger and I panicked like, “Oh my god, I am going to be a box schlepper, I just can’t be put in that category” I came up with this Packaging Chic.

Because my interest in design and fine things and just products and business in general, I came up with this Packaging Chic company. Boiled down, it really is I’m a packaging sales rep.

[0:04:08.2] Georgiana Dearing:
Yeah, but I’ve worked with brokers before particularly in specialty production like in print, there is kind of just in general like ink on pieces of paper like for books or magazines or brochures. There is a level of broker that they’re pretty much just selling the job over and over again.

I’ve worked with specialty brokers like yourself who are part of the problem-solving process like, “We need to put it in a thing”, okay, well, you can make this thing in this shape or this size or I’m thinking of a project we did a few years ago with someone whose specialty was binders and case boxes, which is a whole set of production tools and resources in the industry. They were, “How do you get the rings and how do you do the back and do you do a wrap and do you do it with paper or gloss” or we were doing something that required a textured vinyl laminate.

We met years ago when I’ve been following your career and I follow you on Instagram and I think that you are educating about the same kinds of things. Your value ad partner and not just a cost ad in the process.

[0:05:27.9] Sharon Eucce:
That’s wonderful, thank you. You put out content or you think you have this message to share and educate and so I really appreciate you saying that because you’re spot on.

[0:05:41.3] Georgiana Dearing:
With that, I wanted to talk about the options that are available to these brands that are really like, you talk about cosmetics and specialty food. These are not generally mass production price points. They’re asking for more many because they have more quality on what’s inside the package and you referenced selling at the shelf. I’ve always talked about packaging being one of your silent salesmen, it’s there to tell your story when you can’t.

[0:06:12.4] Sharon Eucce:
So true.

[0:06:14.2] Georgiana Dearing:
I just first been asking everyone before we get into the nitty-gritty of questions I have about your work and what you're doing, packaging like everything else has kind of taken some big hits from the pandemic and I just want to know, how has that impacted you or your clients?

[0:06:32.1] Sharon Eucce:
Yeah and you’re referring to COVID, our friend from 2020. Well, it’s interesting because when you say packaging, that’s just a huge, huge industry and I think one of my largest clients is a beauty brand, SHISharon EucceIDO, and within the SHISharon EucceIDO family, the brand I’ve been working with is Bare Essentials and their side-kick Buxom and I’m telling you, I mean, that dropped off to nothing, you think, lip color, no one’s going anywhere, no one’s buying anything for quite a while.

That really dropped off but what this kind of did was it spawned people to finally, “You know what? I’m going to do my own skincare brand.” You know? There’ve been a lot of startups and a lot of people coming out of the woodwork at that starting end or starting point. Then, on the other side is of course e-commerce, just went through the roof. I mean, that really hammered the corrugated people, corrugated companies, they can’t make stuff fast enough.

The material itself, the corrugated material has extended lead times but those plants that are printing and converting that corrugated material, their lead times are way out, also, they’ve got so much business. Packaging, especially on the e-commerce or think of kits where you’re going to put maybe three spice packs together in the same box because now, you’re going to ship those out to your new, “You just setup a whole subscription program.” This is how you, you’re especially think company to decide to pivot in 2020 just to keep some sales going.

I think packaging in general was definitely affected but I think there was a lot of upside to it. Me personally, I used to travel. I was travelling 50% of the month. Meeting people, showing samples, doing all these and I am so glad that I knew already how to use Zoom. I mean, in the beginning, I was actually training my friends. If anyone needs any help on how to use Zoom, I can do it. I found, actually, this has been really fun to get to see people. I probably, I am sorry but I probably would not have flown out to Virginia to hang out with you, right? We might have met in Chicago again. I also try to keep on the positive side and see where I can help and what I can do to pivot myself.

[0:09:00.9] Georgiana Dearing:
That’s kind of interesting, you were talking about corrugated. I was in a conference with some colleagues here, a virtual conference, with some colleagues here in Virginia in like a few weeks ago and there was a packaging rep. One of the things they mentioned was they actually had a plant in North Carolina that was slated to shut down and they were in the process of removing the equipment when the pandemic hit and they’re like, “We got to ramp this back up because of e-commerce”. That was like an interesting impact on just –

[0:09:34.5] Sharon Eucce:
Very interesting.

[0:09:35.2] Georgiana Dearing:
On the shippers basically, the outside shipping containers and that I was like, “Oh wow, I hadn’t even thought about that,” but we know that there’s delays across all kinds of weird platforms now. I think we’re going to see more of them.

[0:09:51.8] Sharon Eucce:
Yes, it’s been fun though to have new brands reach out or brands – you know, they’re in the packaging world there are integrated, they’re integrated companies and then independent. The integrated are the ones who actually make the board and they offer to convert and sell that packaging.

Then the independents are the ones that buy material on the open market. Those big guys, the integrateds, I’ve always been sort of a champion of the underdog, I guess but those integrated are, their lead times are way up, they don’t want to talk to you, so busy, whatever. It’s fun for the independent people because they can really use their creativity to help clients produce new packaging. It’s been interesting.

[0:10:39.1] Georgiana Dearing:
Yeah, so probably a lot of highs and lows over the last 12 months, I’m sure.

[0:10:44.4] Sharon Eucce:
Yeah, okay yes.

[0:10:47.1] Georgiana Dearing:
One of the things that interests me is sort of the colors and shapes and technologies that are – I’ve seen a lot of things get maybe not less expensive but more accessible for shorter runs in the last couple of years and I wondered, is there anything that’s like a favorite of yours that would be appealing to these startup brands for what you can do to your packaging at the shelf?

[0:11:13.5] Sharon Eucce:
That’s exciting. I mean, the biggest revolution in packaging is digital print. What that translates to is, for the number cruncher people, you don’t have to order as many pieces. This helps for inventory; you don’t have all this obsolete inventory. Say you have ingredients that change, you just bought 500,000 boxes, let’s say the chocolate came from X country and now you’ve had a change to another country, what are you going to do with all those boxes? That is just money down the drain.

Now, with digital, you can run shorter runs, smaller quantities. I just love digital for everything. And you know, it’s taken a while for it to get to the corrugated side but it’s there too. That may – and you see it now with all these unboxings and beautiful e-commerce shippers where they open it and there’s beautiful graphics on the inside. Like full color graphics, not just black or red or green. Yes, I get very geeked out about digital in general and say, on the folding carton or you know, the unit cartons, the type of stuff you see on the shelf.

I see a lot of similar designs out there, there’s a lot of – right now, there’s just bold, flat color, which is fine and then I keep worrying, does this mean that foil stamping is going away? Because foil stamping had always been that thing, you are walking down the aisle and something shiny is over there and that’s on the shelf, foil is shiny so that gets you to look over at it but now there’s even foil with digital presses. I still love the sparkle stuff.

[0:13:02.5] Georgiana Dearing:
That’s what I was going to say is I think you can do foils now with some digital technology and I think that’s kind of you’re right, foil was one of those – I mean, years and years ago, that was like a very out there attainable thing because first you had to get a dye made and those were expensive to make and then of course, pay for the foil and now with digital technology, it’s like bring it much closer to the smaller, more craft, more regional, local or exclusive kinds of brands.

[0:13:35.8] Sharon Eucce:
Yeah, that’s not just foil, I mean, when you’re thinking, if you are on shelf, you still, you have your visual and then you also have your tactile. Also, in digital, there are laminates or spot gloss or spot texture that can be applied as well. Now, you can do this in regular offset printing too. It’s not like this is all crazy new. This is just trying to mimic what’s already available at the larger quantities.

You know, when I say larger quantities, really, digital is great from one to say 5,000. At about 5,000 or 7,500 is that quantity that kind of shifts you over to offset.

[0:14:18.0] Georgiana Dearing:
That’s a higher number, I think than it used to be. Well, you’re tacking and packaging and converting but on sheets of paper, that number tips around 500 to a thousand quantity.

[0:14:29.9] Sharon Eucce:

[0:14:30.6] Georgiana Dearing:

[0:14:32.0] Sharon Eucce:
Every time I tell you, when I request estimates, I always request both ways, digital and offset because I’m so curious, is it still true? Is it still true that it’s about 5,000? A brand might order 20,000 pieces across five skews and that’s only 4,000 per. I think it’s still reasonable to do that. The other thing about digital of course is the variable data, so that’s exciting too. I haven’t done anything with it yet because you know, there’s the whole computer programming side to it and inputting the data and all that, I just personally haven’t gotten the opportunity to do that but that would be like if you –

Who was it? One of the beer companies probably. Where they have Chicago Bears beer and then it’s the same design but you could also get a Green Bay Packers beer or you know, the graphics. Like with the Coca-Cola, was it Coca-Cola cans?

[0:15:28.5] Georgiana Dearing:
It was Coke, yeah, where you could get the names on them or you know, a Coke with my mom, that’s the one my kids would always send me.

[0:15:36.9] Sharon Eucce:
That’s all digital and variable data, which I’m more the visual creative person but I do kind of geek out on the technical side of things. I love knowing all the new stuff that’s coming out.

[0:15:49.2] Georgiana Dearing:
Well, I was looking at your feed and I have to ask you, I cannot let it go by without asking you about the Beyonce box that you posted. Can you just tell me for a minute about that box because I looked at it and you said it was your biggest box and its full color and it’s folded, just tell me a little bit about it, really.

[0:16:10.8] Sharon Eucce:
This was a project for Ivy Park and Adidas and first I will say, I had no contact with Beyonce.

[0:16:18.3] Georgiana Dearing:
Yeah, okay.

[0:16:19.1] Sharon Eucce:
This is one of those things where the creative agency comes up with the idea, they find someone that can help them package and then that package person called me to actually execute the production. I don’t know if you swipe through. I think there is a video in there where I am actually holding the box and I mean it is a very large box. It’s printed both sides inside and out full color. The photographs themselves were also used as backdrops for models. Inside this box, you got shoes and Adidas sweatpants and jacket and that sort of thing.

Those photos were used for a backdrop for models, you could go and have your picture in front of this backdrop. When I got the files, the photographs were a gig. They were huge and they kept crashing my computer.

[0:17:06.0] Georgiana Dearing:
Oh my goodness.

[0:17:06.7] Sharon Eucce:
Yeah, I did get the opportunity to do the production art for that and then actually have them produced and so that was a broker job and quantity I think the first time was 250, maybe 300 and then they actually reprinted 100 and those boxes were – I am not going to say the price because that would be wrong but they were large, you can see.

[0:17:31.7] Georgiana Dearing:
Yeah, I mean they fit a whole shoe and then clothing next to it so that looks more than 12 inches in one direction. That is a pretty big box.

[0:17:40.4] Sharon Eucce:
At some point, if you’re like saying, “Oh we’re going to put all of the stuff in the box” you have to start thinking about what kind of material to be able to – you know, what kind of corrugated material will be able to hold this without it falling apart that’s one thing and then is there a printing press that is big enough to print this and then you know, printing press dye-cut those are just a flat box then you have to ship them.

When they shipped they were actually folded on one of the stores so they could fit on a skid because they were 60 inches by 60 inches basically flat.

[0:18:14.4] Georgiana Dearing:
That’s a huge piece of material for a print job, that’s crazy.

[0:18:18.5] Sharon Eucce:

[0:18:19.5] Georgiana Dearing:
That is crazy. Yes, so that is like a highly specialized problem-solving that you were working on there. There is all of these art and then structural solutions that just to hold the weight and then you’re rolling that is making sure that that art fit on all of the panels the right way so that the fold hit in the right place. I mean that is a crazy technical job.

[0:18:40.4] Sharon Eucce:
Yeah but so fun.

[0:18:42.0] Georgiana Dearing:
Really fun and you get to say that you were Ivy Park, which is also like that’s got its own cache right there.

[0:18:50.5] Sharon Eucce:
It took me a long time to post that because I thought, “Is this going to look all fancy like hey-hey?” Well yeah, that’s the point. Post it. It was fun.

[0:19:02.1] Georgiana Dearing:
Well, the other thing I was noticing is all of these wild colors that are available just like in base-stock like for wraps. Again, your fate is really for a packaging geek. It’s got a lot of nerdy things in there about materials and choices but it is a great background on all of the decisions that need to be made when you are making structural packaging.

[0:19:24.8] Sharon Eucce:
Yes, my gosh there are so many wonderful materials. I think you might be referring to the ridges box wrap because you know, ridged boxes are just chip board and then they’re wrapped kind of like what you were talking about, like a binder basically. It is the same basic technique and there has been a lot of consolidation in the paper business and now Neenah Paper, they have a whole packaging division of products and they bought one of the wonderful collections.

There are just like, you know, snakeskin with metallic or I mean there is wonderful textures and colors available in box wrap and something like that maybe for a chocolate company, you’d have a ridged two-piece box and you could just foil stamp on it because the texture of the paper already says everything about your brand and they just foil stamp your logo. You’d have to have your ingredients in there but maybe you’d have it inside or wherever.

There is a lot of options out there. It’s really all about the brand knowing exactly who they are, what they want, and then I hope to translate that through materials and structure.

[0:20:38.7] Georgiana Dearing:
Well that is another thing you know about picking materials and picking foil. I know that emerging brands can be very hesitant to pick fancier materials because of that idea of it is going to cost more and add to that margin. When you are doing pricing and you are sourcing out materials, do you offer back alternates or solutions or things like that as part of the early relationship building when you’re working with someone new?

[0:21:09.0] Sharon Eucce:
Yes, I would love to if I get the time because it just depends on when I come in with people. I have a startup beauty brand right now where I’m working with them, I’m on retainer monthly to just look at all of their packaging and then also produce their packaging. I love doing that because then I can really feel like I’m, I don’t know, inside the brand and I know the personality but a lot of times, people don’t give enough time and maybe they already know because they have searched on the Internet and they’ve got this and that and they figured this and that.

I think there is this disconnect of, “Well, you’ve seen all of that stuff but do you know how it’s really made or what it costs?” I do appreciate when someone brings inspiration because then I can say, “Well, yes. We could do it this way and that will be, you know, $25 a box. There is another alternative if we went like this, maybe it’s only $10 a box.” I love offering options and then we try to do a pro and con discussion.

[0:22:14.4] Georgiana Dearing:
Yeah, I try to do that too with some of the projects like it’s, “Don’t tell me the solution you want to buy. Let’s talk about the problem you’re trying to solve and then here are ways you can get to that end game.”

[0:22:26.9] Sharon Eucce:
Yeah, well that’s great.

[0:22:28.5] Georgiana Dearing:
Sometimes early on it’s like baby steps, you can establish some things and then you can move another step closer to that end goal where everything is dye-cut and foil stamped and over the top special.

[0:22:43.3] Sharon Eucce:
Which only works for certain brands.

[0:22:44.8] Georgiana Dearing:
It’s only necessary for certain brands to be honest. Not everybody needs to go that direction.

[0:22:50.2] Sharon Eucce:
It’s fun when they do but they don’t all need to. And something, you know, right now what everyone says, “Well, our brand is really sustainable. We want to have all sustainability” blah-blah-blah-blah. I am mocking it in a way because, “Okay. Well, what does that mean to you?” and that is such a huge, another huge subject. Are you talking about I don’t want to use any plastic? Are you talking about I want it to be fully recyclable?

You know, we really have to drill down to what does it mean to you as a brand that your packaging is sustainable? I mean there aren’t recycling infrastructure on all materials yet, you know it takes time but when you are talking about paperboard packaging, that is the most recycled sub-straight out there but then I think if you are doing – so here’s an example, you are saying, “Oh, I want it sustainable.” You are using paperboard packaging for your carton but then you’re covering it with ink.

Now, it’s okay. It’s all recyclable but you kind of just overdid it on that side. Really, the most green or sustainable thing is to just have the paperboard with minimal print and where does that leave us? That’s boring.

[0:24:03.8] Georgiana Dearing:

[0:24:04.6] Sharon Eucce:

[0:24:05.0] Georgiana Dearing:
Well, they’re so easy to do it but that is – do you see a lot of brands that have kind of drifted to that just Kraft with one or two colors on it and if you’re going to be in that space, that is a way to do it but it really again, what is your price point? What are you trying to do with sales? It’s a business decision.

[0:24:23.0] Sharon Eucce:

[0:24:23.4] Georgiana Dearing:
Yeah, it’s a business decision as much as in aesthetic one I think. Yeah, that’s interesting. I think what I think is interesting is the choices there are in paper, colors and textures that can get you a lot closer to making an impact without having to maybe use as much ink really.

[0:24:44.7] Sharon Eucce:
Yeah, well a great story if I may about a project that I had, where the client, it was in pet food and they used to print beautiful illustrations, colorful illustrations with a white background I think, then they’re like, “Oh, we need to look much more sustainable. We’re going to Kraft” and so then we printed white, you know, two layers of white and then we’re printing the graphics on top and when you print opaque white on Kraft, it’s never going to be white, okay people?

Let’s just get that out there, it’s never I mean because it still has brown, you started with brown. Anyway, you know there were probably 20 skews and these were big, big boxes of pet food. They get on shelf and they were the first ones in their niche to do this Kraft look, you know it is a natural pet food and what they found eventually everyone else ganged on and everybody went Kraft. Then, everyone looks the same on the shelf.

They are back to the white with the beautiful illustrations. I mean that’s over a period of time. We also tried to mimic the Kraft like you to scan. People just say, “Oh just scan the Kraft board and use that as your background” but in offset printing, so that’s a four-color process and offset printing is still a science, a balance and if the cyan or the magenta goes a little out of whack, it looks like pink Kraft or blue Kraft or it’s very hard to keep consistent. It was a tough time, a tough project.

[0:26:26.7] Georgiana Dearing:
We’re just working on a very simple label project right now that has a very light tan tone on tone background. I’m waiting on proofs from the manufacturer because I don’t know how tightly they are going to hold that color on press to be honest.

[0:26:42.5] Sharon Eucce:
Is it digital?

[0:26:43.6] Georgiana Dearing:
It’s digital. It’s going to be digital.

[0:26:45.9] Sharon Eucce:
Digital is a lot tighter I feel.

[0:26:48.6] Georgiana Dearing:
It is now, it absolutely is now. It was all over the place when it was first on the market and I was very happy when they sent me their color book and I could compare it to my chips and I was like, “Oh they are pretty spot on for what they say this color is so.”

[0:27:03.3] Sharon Eucce:
If I may, just one other story about Kraft and looking natural and everything. A large company, skincare, they’re revamping everything and they started trying to get quotes on how much is this going to cost, you know different techniques and one of them was to – remember this high-end skin care. It is going to be shelf at Sephora, at Nordstrom, at everywhere. They were going to have Kraft folding cartons with like just a white stripe for the graphic.

When you put that on the shelf, it just was blah. It was just brown blah. It didn’t translate to clean skin care and or you know, clean skin and fresh ingredients and it was just blah. Luckily, that never – that didn’t make it but that was where we came in and did actual box samples so that they can put them on a shelf and they could actually see what it would look like. I mean now, yeah, very cool.

[0:28:01.3] Georgiana Dearing:
That is so useful. That is I do absolutely recommend real mock-ups because I mean you and I just talked at the beginning in this, so we are a whole country apart and talking on screen and the issue is that graphics are going to look different on screen and you are not going to get the sense of anything that is three dimensional until you have it sort of in 3D really. There is a lot that can happen with simulations but you definitely need to have a live sample just proof of concept really.

I was glad that you had a client that let you go through that exercise. Sometimes, you have to do that little buy and step, right? We have been conditioned that Kraft and artisan looking inks are all the signifiers of smart and green and sustainable sourcing. I’m sure that that’s why that comes to mind. It’s like, “Oh I want it to do that and I have seen this icon of green recycled stuff out there and we have to do it too.”

[0:29:05.8] Sharon Eucce:
Ironically enough, the folding carton material that’s most often used is 100% virgin fiber. People think, “Oh Kraft, recycled.”

[0:29:16.3] Georgiana Dearing:
No, that’s at the beginning of this dream. Yeah, it is. It’s really funny just as that’s an example of kind of know your source for real. I love your question, I love that you say, “What does that mean to you?” because that is really important to understand what does it really mean to the brand, so that’s pretty cool.

Well, this is really fun. I don’t want to keep you all day but it was fun and super nerdy, so I apologize to the non-nerds but I was really getting excited hearing about your experience and what is next? What’s on your horizon? Then we’ll wrap up from there.

[0:29:51.8] Sharon Eucce:
I am a lifelong learner. I really just enjoy learning in general, so I have joined the Specialty Food Association. I have always been part of that as going to the fancy food shows of course for testing and visual but now, I really want to offer my services there. You know, whether it is getting clients or just helping people understand the packaging process, at least my end of it so there’s that and then I am starting to do a lot in pouches and wrapper material and that sort of thing, which after being in paperboard packaging for so long, you know I could really talk the whole recycle and sustainable.

Then you get into pouches and people start freaking out, “I want compostable pouches” and that, I’ve sat in a couple of industry presentations of how these companies are really trying to move the needle to get compostable and reduce plastic, so that is interesting to me and I can’t wait to meet some of my new clients.

[0:30:57.0] Georgiana Dearing:
That’s great. That is great. Well, can you just name your company again and tell people where they can find you? Give us your Instagram handle.

[0:31:05.5] Sharon Eucce:
Of course, Sharon Eucce and my company is Packaging Chic and you can find me on Instagram as @packagingchic and let me just say, it’s Packaging Chic but without the K.

[0:31:17.0] Georgiana Dearing:
Packaging Chic.

[0:31:18.3] Sharon Eucce:
Chic, that’s because when I was so excited someone said, “Hey, oh yeah, you’re my packaging chic,” I thought, “Oh my god that’s a great name for a company.” And then I called my parents and I said, “Oh I got this name for a company” “What company?” “My company, Packaging Chic.” And I mean it was dead silent on the end of the line. I said, “Oh, well doesn’t that sound a little biker-ish?” said my mother, “Okay, I’ll take the K off as Packaging Chic to you but it will be Packaging Chic to everybody else,” and that’s how that happen but I have a website also, I’m on LinkedIn, Sharon Eucce, so I look forward to talking to you again.

[0:31:58.0] Georgiana Dearing:
Yes, this was great.

[0:31:59.4] Sharon Eucce:
This was great.

[0:31:59.9] Georgiana Dearing:
Thanks so much.

[0:32:00.5] Sharon Eucce:
All right, thanks George.

[0:32:02.2] Georgiana Dearing:

[0:32:03.8] Georgiana Dearing:
Thanks for listening and if you want to learn more about how to grow your own food brand, then click on “grow my brand” at If you’re a lover of local food, then be sure to follow us. We are @vafoodie on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. Join the conversation and tell us about your adventures with good food, good people and good brands.