I’ve recently noticed a disturbing trend in, of all things, the packaging of some of my favorite snack foods.
Here’s how things used to be… You would initially open a box of cereal or snack bars or whatever by “unzipping” the first layer. This is good. As long as that unzipper tab isn’t completely glued flat to the box, you’re more than halfway to getting your tasty treat. In fact, about the only thing left to do then is open the other loose flap and push open the perforation where Tab A tucks into Flap B to close the box. Simple, right?
Apparently not. The rocket scientists that produce the packaging these days have taken it upon themselves to redesign the boxes, and for the life of me, I cannot figure out a single economic, ergonomic, or logical (uh, loginomic?) reason to do this.
Starts off the same way… Unzip the cardboard top to open the first layer. Then, instead of a loose flap, they have managed to make “perforations” (more like minor indentations in the cardboard) at either side of the inside flap of cardboard, which is still glued to the rest of the box. To finish opening the box, you are supposed to tear open the perforations in order to flip open the inside flap. Huh?!? Why go to the trouble of having the unzipper in the first place if I’m just going to have to tear the damn thing open anyway? I just don’t get it.
I’m sure the unzipper costs more money to produce than a simple fold-over flap that needs to be torn open in the first place. And I don’t know this for fact, but it seems to me that it would cost more money to perforate a piece of cardboard than to simply cut it. So if anyone can explain this particular design decision to me, I would really appreciate it.
In the meantime, I can only hope that the design doesn’t catch on and become a standard. After all, I don’t think anyone wants to live in a world where it takes a crowbar and an engineering degree to open a package of toilet paper.