Packaging and rehydrated oat product

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I’ve been at Starbucks Burlington since 6am.

I got a note from our construction supervisor last night saying there was a problem with the trenching they’re doing. Apparently the drawings we had from our engineers (BLW engineering) were not accurate. So I’m meeting him up here to review the situation.

I’m waiting for him at Starbucks. I tried to find an independent coffee shop in the area and had no luck. I’m constantly trying products doing my best to learn where competitors are and what they do. And while Starbucks isn’t exactly a company we think of as a competitor, there is a lot to admire and learn from them.

I bought a medium latte and an oatmeal. It was the oatmeal that really caught my attention. Check out that picture. That’s the packaging I got for ONE OATMEAL! Isn’t that sort of amazing? Really! I count 7 pieces of packaging for this product: a bag, a plastic bag wrapped plastic straw, a nut pack in plastic, “fresh blueberries” in plastic (packaged 4/27/13, they actually list that on there which I think is sort of cool, but not exactly fresh as they are almost a month old and from California), a packet of sweetener (that I didn’t ask for) and the oatmeal itself with a lid. Wow!

I don’t know if this amazes anyone else, but I’ve been really obsessed with packaging lately. We’re trying to make our food better togo. And I think we’re on a great track. But do you know how many items you get when you order oatmeal from us? 1. A cup of oatmeal. To be fair most customers will help themselves to a spoon. That’s 2 items. What do you think about the excess packaging you get when you order food out? Does it bother you? Do you think about it at all? Where does it go?

5 Responses to Packaging and rehydrated oat product

  1. maria 16 May, 2013 at 7:35 am #

    I think True North is an independent coffee shop; it’s near the Cambridge Savings Bank and School House Ice Cream shop. http://www.truenorthcoffeecafe.com/

    Also, can’t WAIT for your Burlington location! Which plaza will it be located in? The one with the Starbucks? Or near the Staples?

  2. Rachel 16 May, 2013 at 10:56 am #

    Starbucks goes crazy with the packaging. Next time you’re there, order one of their pre-packaged yogurt parfaits (they’re pretty tasty; I’m fond of the peach raspberry one, myself). It’s crazy expensive, and has about a zillion pieces of packaging.

  3. Carlos hsq 17 May, 2013 at 1:27 am #

    I must say Compose? Lol but that’s right they don’t care bout the environment like we do. But really is All that packaging is necessary?

  4. Kimi 17 May, 2013 at 1:53 pm #

    In ‘Folks, This Ain’t Normal’, Salatin has a great description of the packaging around airline meals. Same sort of disastrous thinking as you experience here. It is nuts how dependent we are on plastic, which is made to be durable and last forever, as a disposable!

    I also agree with Maria, True North is a great spot!

  5. Andrew 21 May, 2013 at 9:45 am #

    I think about take-out packaging a lot. Sometimes when I go out to a restaurant I bring my own container for leftovers. It saves the environment a little bit and helps out the restaurant.

    This isn’t convenient for everyone because of the bulkiness of some containers and some people would feel weird about it.

    So to overcome that I’ve had the idea of a reusable, collapsible container that’ll save space, the environment, etc. To incentivize people to use it, businesses could offer a very minor discount to customers who bring it in. Something like that.

    Good idea? Or folly?

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