What Is Smart Packaging Technology

Posted August 15, 2023 smart packaging

Packaging is a field that has seen many trends in history and has seen many new ways to get here. The same goes for the new ones entering this industry; smart packaging is one of these trends. Although it looks like a single thing, it has multiple methods to achieve what it offers. It gives you and your customers the ease you need for better use.

So, this blog can give you its types, why it matters, what it is with examples, and its future and opportunities. We will discuss the smartest packaging design elements you need to know as an entrepreneur. At the same time, you can find types, future trends, existing trends with benefits, and top industries you need to know.

What Is Smart Packaging?

Smart packaging uses technologies that allow consumers to get more information about the products and the manufacturers.

Its Technologies Defined

Here are some categories and uses that you can consider to be on this list:

  • There are intelligent technologies for packaging that allow you to interact with your packages. This way, you allow your customers to interact with your package to learn about its features and freshness. It falls under smart technologies.
  • An everyday use of smart packaging is to improve the shelf life of products.
  • A more common type of this is reusable packaging, a household name in many countries.
  • Another type is shelf-life extension packaging which helps improve a product’s shelf life.
  • Then, we can find connected packaging that connects your product to the digital world.
  • Product authentication packaging allows your specific customers to know about their products.
  • Smart labels are also a common method of allowing information about your product.
  • Also, you can find security packaging that improves consumers’ protection and awareness levels against tempering.
  • There is another type of smart packaging, named consumer engagement packaging. It allows you to engage them in a way. There can be recipes, photos, QR codes, or other ways to achieve this.
  • Using tracking packaging allows you to find the location of a product when it is on the go.
  • Companies are also creating technologies that track data from multiple departments to give authentic information.

Now that we know about them, we will discuss their features and why they matter.

Why Does Smart Packaging Technology Matter?

When it comes to the pros of these technologies, you get a lot out of them. So, they offer you to:

Benefits Of Smart Packaging

  • Using some of these technologies allows you to avoid food wastage. In addition, these technologies can indicate if the product is worth using or should be discarded, allowing better handling.
  • The tracking technology we mentioned allows you to avoid any chance of tempering during transit. This technology needs to be updated to give the industry a better level of trackability.
  • Also, you can improve your products to avoid any environmental issues the packaging could create.
  • This way, you also have the data about when to replenish your customers.
  • You can use them to have reasonable control over your product’s quality with better shelf life and other facilities.
  • New technologies allow for better customer experience, a must-have for companies. So, it is a new technology that keeps your brand relevant for your customers and audiences.
  • Ensuring your packaging contains authentication methods can allow you to be sure your products are not faked. This way, you make sure customers can be sure of what they are buying and who they are buying from.
  • The data you get with these technologies allows you to eliminate overstocking and helps keep the right stocks for your production and others.

Benefits For Consumers

  • Another benefit of these factors is adding media to your QR codes and other packaging elements. It helps you get tutorial videos, product info, and other stuff.
  • Smart labels allow you to authenticate any products for their quality and origin.
  • You can use them to show your concern and efforts for eco-friendly initiatives.
  • When consumers know about the product and its ingredients, they can better choose from a list of goods.
  • Using smart packaging design allows you to get data about any step of the product in any manufacturing department.
  • It allows your customers to find the best information they need and use it for their benefit.

Smart Packaging Examples, Types, And Uses

The use of smart packaging solutions can be a great way to make use of best practices that will change the world. Here are some incredible advancements and what you can do to make a big difference.

What Is Active Packaging With Its Food Applications

Active packaging is one of the technologies mentioned earlier, and many smart packages fall under it. Certain features help industries get the results they need with these. So, they offer:

  • Improving the quality of foods
  • They also help extend the shelf life of products
  • This technology allows you to avoid using preservatives that can harm the end consumers from a health perspective.

Here are some of the common active packaging examples:

Temperature System Active Technology:

This technology allows your food products to be heated and cooled inside the package. This way, you can cook and consume the product inside your packaging.

Emitted Systems and Absorbers:

Using absorbers allows you to avoid toxins inside your package. This also means avoiding moisture or taste issues in the product. In addition, the emitters method improves the antimicrobial properties of your boxes to prevent such elements.

Product Modifiers:

Then there are product modifiers that interact with your food products to offer anti-oxidative, smell-absorbant, and antimicrobial properties. This way, you get rid of any chances of food rotting.

How Does It Work?

Multiple ways come into play when you enter this method. For instance, it can:

  • It can remove oxygen inside a food box to prevent food from rotting.
  • At the same time, you can use antimicrobial substances to improve your product’s deterioration.
  • One of the common mechanisms of action for this method is modifying the environment to remove any chances of food decomposition.
  • The list of these chemical agents is long; ions, natural extracts, organic acids, and enzymes are some.
  • Also, you can incorporate elements into your packaging.
  • With this method, you can add the components that allow better protection to your food boxes. On the other hand, other methods would require a complete material change for such results.
  • The antimicrobial chemical composition used for packaging safety allows this solution in two ways. One type offers this by moving to the food surface. Then, they do not need to be in contact with your food products for this result.
  • Antioxidation can help improve the shelf life of food products by avoiding bad smells that can be undesirable.

Intelligent Packaging And Food Applications

When we talk about intelligent packaging, they are a significant fraction of smart technologies. The thing is, intelligent packaging is one of the types of smart packaging. So, this section tells how it works with different mechanisms.

The Indicators:

This method gives immediate information about foods by the change of color. They work for multiple factors, like temperature, oxygen, and freshness.

Data Carriers:

These devices would help identify, automate, and identify malicious activities around your product. This includes any theft, tempering, and forgery activities.


These would give information about your boxes’ location. They work by offering information about pathogens, allergic factors, and any elements of pollution.

Uses of Smart Packaging In Different Industries

Industries that use such packaging have a vast range of uses. This section can give you all the common services in the food industry. For instance:

Use in the Food Industry

Smart packaging allows you to use QR and AR methods to let your customers interact with your products. This way, they can find the information and content they prefer for their products. Such technological use may include cooking recipes, videos around the proper use, and other information about the product.

Use In the Beverage Industry

Adding smart technology to the beverage industry can help you get better carbonation level monitoring for your drinks. At the same time, you can use RFID tags and holographic elements to improve the authenticity identity of your customers. Also, you can allow your customers to use this packaging type to create cocktails with the help of your beverages.

All you must do is add this information to your QR codes and other smart packaging elements. Moreover, you can add personalized promotions for your customers for better customer experience.

Smart Packaging Use in the Agriculture Industry

Similar help can improve agriculture to get you perfect temperature control and humidity and also help improve waste conditions. In addition, some technologies can help you find moisture levels inside your crops that can help improve the loss of products.

You can reduce fungi, molds, and bacteria production inside your agricultural products. Smart methods can improve your ability to track harvest dates, storage temperatures, and handling conditions. This way, the handling and distribution methods can be improved.

Even Ethylene absorbers can fasten the ripening process of your vegetables and fruits.

Smart Packaging In Healthcare

You can try it for healthcare and pharmaceuticals. You can try to monitor any conditions that could cause an issue with your medicines to get rid of them. It can even help you get reminders for patients about the dosage of the medicine without any literature in the physical form.

Temperature monitoring can help keep your medicinal products safe during transport and storage. At the same time, you can use evidence-based temper packaging to improve the authentication of fresh and unused medicine.

Electronics Industry

This method can help improve your product safety during transport by monitoring shocks, humidity, temperature, etc. Also, it would help improve the results when you are looking to transport them. The technology can improve how smartly your products are shipped and transported with proper monitoring.

Also, its use would make your business more eco-friendly for your products by reducing the waste you create.

Future And Existing Trends For Smart Packaging

Multiple trends have been working in this industry. So, there are limitless possibilities when discussing how this industry will change and bring new trends. Some are:

Internet of Things

When we talk about IoT or the Internet of Things, there are many benefits it can provide. For instance:

  • As we have been discussing data collection during the processes we mentioned, it is the method to get that.
  • The same method can help you get data about your supply chain system that can improve business-to-business companies.
  • It also can help you get an assurance of your product’s quality and improve the customer experience that every company wants to enhance.
  • You can also rely on it to be sure your boxes stay safe from any issues during transport.

NFC Or Near Field Communication

NFC has been helping multiple companies better present their products with authenticity. So, if you want to use this method, it can improve how well your supply chain works. You can find it helpful for quality assurance, just like other technologies in this category.

You can add NFC tags and seals to your packaging to help the customer know of any tempering around the package.

Future Trends In Smart Packaging

Here are some trends you need to know in this regard.

Advanced-Data Analytics And Sensors

These new trends will change how different jobs look in the near future. This way, B2B companies can find new ways to find data about products in different processes. This can be revolutionary for the supply chain, decision-making, and other things.

Blockchain Integration

This future trend will be helpful in the new internet world that will bring a new era of opportunities. So, using it can help you get data integration with blockchain technology. The data saved on this technology will be free of any chance of tempering.

You can be sure it stays exactly like it was saved, meaning there will be better accountability around packaging. In addition, you can keep other types of data records there, like authenticity certifications and general information. So, this integration can be revolutionary to help B2B and B2C companies keep accountability in multiple related fields.

Voice Assistants And Devices

Your boxes may even start talking when you send or receive them. So, the future may even bring a new technology that can help you get information from boxes in audio form. You will be able to find all the info you need for the usage or properties of your products.

These boxes will also be able to help you with the condition of the products. It could also go far to the level of a machine speaking out to tell you when to take your medicine. It can even be a clock ticking off to say your cake is no longer consumable. The possibilities are endless.

Your Plan Of Action Adopting It For Your B2B?

If you want to adopt an action plan to get this packaging method into your company’s daily processes, here is what you need:

  • It would be best to start by identifying your needs with the help of research and finding the departments you can improve. At the same time, you can find out the processes you can improve.
  • Then, you can find the methods that would work for your pain points and improve the things you have identified here.
  • Next, you should be able to find the strategies you can apply for long-term and short-term goals you care about.
  • The next step will be finding partners to help you achieve your goals. You should have a complete game plan for finding them for a thorough adoption. Professionals and companies like packaging suppliers, technology providers, and others are essential.
  • Then, you should train your employees and apply the changes that need to work for these processes.
  • Next, you should find ways to improve your implementation and new methods for further implementation.

Packaging Hub: Your Packaging Partner

Your packaging needs may or may not be advanced, but Packaging Hub has been working to improve your standards. You can avail of our services to get the best out of the bucks you put into a good packaging job. Let us thoroughly change what you can get from a company that knows what it is doing.


What do additives have to do with smart packaging?

When it comes to additives that you can add to smart packaging, here are some great options:

  • Oxygen scavengers can help absorb excess oxygen within the packaging to slow down any kind of bacteria growth and avoid product spoilage.
  • At the same time, you can try antimicrobial agents with packaging, like essential oils and natural polymers.
  • Then, ethylene absorbers prevent food products like fruits and vegetables from ripening too quickly.
  • You can also try biodegradable additives for better biodegradability or packaging materials, improving the decomposability of packaging materials.

What is smart food packaging?

Smart packaging has become a common method of packing food products these days as it integrates with technologies like sensors, indicators, and communication chips. The main features of such packaging are monitoring freshness, temperature control, traceability, and antimicrobial properties. At the same time, it can have interactive features and transparency factors.

Types of smart or intellegent packaging?

There are smart packaging types that work in the following ways:

One of the most common types of smart packaging is color-changing indicators that use pigments that retract to certain changes.

  • For instance, some of them indicate changes in oxygen levels and antimicrobial material growth, indicating the freshness of the food packed inside.
  • Then, there are gas sensors that detect certain gasses that may indicate spoilage organisms to help you learn about the freshness of the product. Also, you can use biosensors to detect any bacteria or other contaminants.
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Steve Harsh
Steve Harsh, a packaging and printing expert who has been working in the field for over a decade. It has been my privilege to write on this topic, which I have been doing for years to help people learn about this essential field that helps millions achieve their business goals.

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