Packaging for Farmers Market Food Stands: What Works

Posted on August 2, 2017 by Ash Bennett

Food Packaging matters. Whether you’re selling boutique cupcakes or noodle dishes, takeaway packaging plays a big part in the customer’s experience. Choosing something that works for your particular food product is important. Take into account things like moisture content, whether the shopper will eat the entire dish now or take it home, and whether your product needs extra protection.


When a buyer walks away from your market stall, they should have everything needed to enjoy their food. Snack items are usually eaten right away, so takeaway packaging doesn’t need to hold up all day. What it does need to do is provide ease of access while the customer wanders the farmers market. Food cones are brilliant for packaging snacks like popcorn, granola, chips and fries, nuts and anything that’s easily eaten with one hand. More delicate items like slices of cake, sweets bread, or pie require utensils and are better served on disposable plates or bowls. Because they will finish the snack quickly, there isn’t an urgent need for a moisture barrier, so cardboard and fiber items work well.


Consider your product. Does it have a sauce that needs containing? Are there components that shouldn’t mix? Often eaters don’t finish their entire portion and would like to take the remainder home with them. Because of this, takeaway packaging for food stand meals should have a cover. Maybe this means that you dish it into leak resistant noodle boxes. If your meal is best served on a plate, consider wrapping the plate with foil to give the customer the option of re-wrapping what they don’t finish.


Beverages like fresh squeezed juice are beautiful- seeing their vibrant colors is part of the appeal. Clear cups are the way to go for cold drinks that have refreshing looks. Hot drinks on a chilly morning call for something different. If you’re not going to sleeve your hot cups, make sure they are double walled to retain heat in the beverage and protect your customer’s fingers. Remember your beverage trays. You don’t want to send customers on their way balancing three or more drinks in their arms.


Specialty items like artisanal ice cream, baked goods, or meat products require some innovative food packaging solutions. Bakery items like cupcakes and doughnuts need containers that won’t compromise decorative toppings. Window display boxes hold up nicely and allow passersby to see the goodies inside, drawing them to your market stand. Add appeal to ice cream tubs with personalized stickers that feature your logo. Greaseproof sandwich paper is an excellent choice for packaging artisanal meats and cheeses, also completed with a logo sticker. Place them in a boutique shopping bag for easy carrying; your customers will be more than satisfied.

Between developing your product, designing your market stand, learning farmers’ market policies, and branding your business, food packaging can get overlooked and undervalued. Don’t underestimate the effect it has on customers. The right packaging choices may be what brings them back to your business.

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