Students from Durham College (DC) and other post-secondary institutions across Ontario answered the call of the Packaging Association of Canada’s (PAC) Just One Package Student Competition on May 18, with the goal to reduce waste and eliminate the need for single-use packaging in retail. Two Graphic Design students, Gwenda Thomas and Jasmine Isidoro, earned second place for their submission, as staff from PAC retail members Canadian Tire, Costco, Home Depot, Sobeys, Walmart and Wegmans joined the audience to judge challenge submissions.
This year, contestants worked with medium or large products to create packaging that appeals to consumers, is environmentally friendly, and has the flexibility to be used in multiple product settings. Competitors were allotted 15 minutes to present their projects to event attendees and a panel of retail experts for feedback. After the presentations, entrants set up tables in common areas for more in-depth explanations and full exposure to guests.
The audience voted to determine Best of Show, 1st, 2nd and 3rd places, which all received recognition awards. However, the winners weren’t the only ones rewarded; retailers found new solutions to reduce packaging waste, audience members got valuable education, and inventive students gained access to primary markets for their products, recognition for their efforts and the chance for employment. All participating students and schools received a small monetary reward for participation and contributing solutions to the important issues facing the packaging industry.
The Just One Package Student Competition was presented during PAC’s Innovation Challenge as a special luncheon feature event, and served as an excellent avenue for students to display their talent and ingenuity to industry leaders. Every year a new and unique challenge is issued, pushing competitors to their creative limits and inspiring original, innovative designs.