since it introduced the product in 1986.
At that time, only two flavors of the 2.3-oz bars were sold. Now there are eight varieties. "With the new flavors, it wasn't easy for consumers to tell them apart, so we've added color gradations to set them apart, while still keeping the maroon PowerBar brand mark," explains Debbie Pfeifer, public relations manager. The company partnered with SBG Enterprise (San Francisco, CA) on the design, which includes "hold here" and "tear here" graphics to help users open the pack. The color gradations are prominent at the two end seals.
More important, the new wrap makes it easier for consumers to tear open the pack and get to the bar, especially in warm weather areas where the product would tend to stick to the wrapper, says Pfeifer.
PowerBar isn't saying much about its new material, except that it's 2.3 mils thick and includes polypropylene and "coextruded layers." The former wrap was a 2.5-mil material and included polyester and polyethylene layers. The energy bars are sold nationwide, retailing for $1.29 to $1.69 in more than 75ꯠ locations ranging from supermarkets to mass merchandise outlets to health food stores.
"We tested our easier-to-open wrappers with a wide network of athletes and received positive feedback," says Colin Sankey, brand manager for the product. "The new film structure tears easily and reduces the time and effort needed to open the wrapper, without sacrificing seal integrity."