09. March 2023

Kantar consumer survey: Consumers rated Pure-Pak® eSense as the ideal packaging for plant-based drinks

  • Clearly superior to the competition: Pure-Pak® with advantage in terms of segment fit, attractiveness and willingness to buy
  • Sustainable packaging as the key to brand positioning in the plant-based market
  • Reading recommendation: Interview with Michael Oppenheimer in vegconomist
In the quest for plant-based alternatives to traditional cow’s milk, consumers are faced with a large and ever-growing selection of oat, soya, almond and other plant-based drinks when shopping. In order to win over customers and retain them in the long term, brands must establish a stronger profile and develop convincing, target-group-orientated marketing concepts. Packaging can make a key, sales-promoting contribution to this brand positioning and not just with an attractive, unique design that sets them apart from the competition on the shelf. For plant-based drinks in particular, the sustainability of the packaging also plays a key role:
In a consumer survey conducted by Kantar, 83 percent of surveyed plant-based drink consumers said they consider sustainable packaging for plant-based dairy alternatives to be “important” (47%) or “very important” (36%).
The market researcher interviewed 304 buyers of plant-based drinks within the age range 18 to 60 on behalf of Elopak in December 2022. Panel participants rated Elopak’s Pure-Pak® packaging in a white and natural brown version compared to two competitor beverage cartons. All four tested packages bore the identical generic oat drink design. The aim was to gain insights into the potential of sustainable packaging and the acceptance of Pure-Pak® compared to the competition.
Infographic: packages tested
The conclusion of Kantar’s market researchers could not have been clearer:
“Pure-Pak® packaging is far superior in the field of dairy alternatives. It is more appealing, generates a significantly higher interest in buying among consumers and is more unique.”

Perfect fit: Pure-Pak® is the prefered packaging for plant-based drinks

The surveyed buyers of dairy alternatives regarded Pure-Pak® as the packaging that best suits plant-based drinks – with a clear advantage over the competition:
Infografik: Kategorie Fit
Infographic: Segment Fit
Infographic: purchase intent - top 2 boxes
Infographic: purchase intent - top 2 boxes
For 83 % of surveyed buyers sustainable packaging for plant-based milk alternatives is important.
Additional options for even more sustainability: Additional climate-friendly packaging features raise reputation with consumers.
Twice as attractive: An “attractive, beautiful packaging“, that “catches the buyer's eye on the shelf“: That's what twice as many surveyed buyers say about Elopak's packaging compared to those of its competitors.
When buying plant-based dairy alternatives, the consumers pay particular attention to full recyclability when it comes to packaging, that it is resealable and produced with as little plastic as possible, or ideally completely free from plastic.
It should come as no surprise that sustainability aspects of the packaging play such an important role for consumers of plant-based drinks: For many consumers, the desire for a conscious diet and responsible lifestyle is a key motivation to buy. The lower the sustainability of the packaging used for these products, the more they negate this goal.

For plant-based drinks, packaging that matches the product and core of the brand should therefore be just as sustainable as its contents. And this must also be communicated clearly to the customer in the supermarket.

At Elopak, for example, this is achieved by the unbleached natural brown board produced from sustainable forest management: In this variant, the characteristic gable top carton can be identified at first glance as the more climate-friendly choice of material. Combined with other features, such as the elimination of the aluminium barrier in the Pure-Pak® eSense for aseptic filling and the use of plant-based renewable plastics, the CO2 footprint can be reduced by up to 50 percent compared to a conventional beverage carton. The use of these additional climate-friendly features further improves customers’ overall perception of Pure-Pak®packaging, as shown by the findings of the Kantar consumer survey.
Infographic: Customer Survey Packaging Preferences
Infographic: Customer Survey Packaging Preferences
“Plant-based dairy alternatives are a very dynamic market that will certainly continue to change significantly in the coming years. I think that initially the variety of products will increase, whereas some products will disappear from the market again. It will therefore become increasingly important to establish a clear brand identity and stand out from the competition”
Michael Oppenheimer, Manager Market Unit Germany bei Elopak

Reading recommendation:

Michael Oppenheimer interview with the vegconomist
More from Elopak Germany’s Market Unit Manager on trends in the market for on-trend dairy alternatives, the role of climate-friendly beverage packaging for convincing brand positioning and how to clearly communicate this positioning when addressing the consumer.
Press release Elopak launches Pure-Pak® eSense
Interview highlighting sustainable packaging - Vegconomist
Lidl Vemondo DACH, France, Poland
Lidl relaunches oat drinks in the Pure-Pak® Sense Aseptic carton under its own brand Vemondo. The products can be found in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, France and Poland.
The Green Dairy AB, our customer in Sweden since 2018, has taken another big step forward for the plant-based movement as it distributes a new range of oat-based drinks to IKEA using the Pure-Pak® Sense aseptic cartons.
Friendly Viking’s
Plant based alternatives by the friendly Viking: Using their brand „Friendly Viking’s“ finnish family-run Juustoportti offers drinks from nordic oats – using environment-friendly packaging by Elopak!