Packaging and Labeling

As many food businesses have notes, packaging is what gets a consumer to try a products the first time, taste is what makes them buy it the second time.  In addition to influencing a consumer to choose your product from the store shelf, packaging also keeps your product fresh tasting and safe.

Mark Olson of Renaissance Farm gives an excellent overview of the considerations he puts into packaging selection in this video:

Labeling Regulations

In addition to attracting your customer’s attention, your label is required by law to communicate certain information.  Specific requirements depend on the size of your company and your sales volume.

The WI Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection, Division of Food Safety offers several fact sheets on labeling requirements for various products here.

Cheese & Cheese Product Labeling Guidelines – 3 page PDF
Includes standard of identity names and ingredients statements.

Frequent Food Label Questions – 8 page PDF
A brief guide to processed food labeling, and how to get more information.

Retail Labeling Guidelines – 2 page PDF
Includes features of a label, and exemptions and exceptions.

Sandwich labeling guidelines – 1 page PDF
Definitions and requirements for prepackaged wholesale or retail sandwiches.

Labeling and Packaging1 page PDF
This sheet discusses product formulation, the content of labels, and packaging.

Labeling Language2 page PDF
This sheet discusses plain language, required ingredients and supplemental statements.

Food Label Sources – 2 page PDF

A list of Wisconsin sources for design and printing of food labels.
Labeling of Juice Products
FDA final rule on warning & notice statements, July 1998.

Labeling of Shell Eggs
FDA guidelines about safe handling statements for whole eggs not treated for Salmonella, July 2001

Bar/Universal Product Codes
The Uniform Code Council, Inc. has information about getting barcodes.

Graphic Design

Thinking about hiring a graphic designer to help with your label but don’t know where to start?  check out this guide from AIGA:

A Client’s Guide to Design: How to get the most out of the process

Need some inspirations?  Check out The Dieline, a Package Design Blog for creative packaging ideas

The Food BIN Network is managed by the Agricultural Innovation Center
with the support of Thrive and the Economic Development Administration.