Orgain Grows with New Plant-Based Nutrition Powder

Orgain's packaging is guided by sustainability and reducing environmental impact. With the recent introduction of Superfoods + Immunity Up! ™ to its expansive line of nutrition products, the brand has accelerated its positive growth over the last decade.

Packaging World first visited with Orgain back in 2010, when the company was still relatively new. Founded by Dr. Andrew Abraham with a home blender and a desire to find an all-natural, food-based nutritional shake during cancer treatment, the brand has grown to include a diverse range of clean nutrition products, including shakes, protein powders, and snack bars for adults and kids. Orgain's products are gluten-free, non-GMO, and made without soy, artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives.

We asked Greg Fry, Group Director of Innovation and Commercialization at Orgain, a few questions about the company’s growth and packaging choices over the last few years.

PW:

Nutraceuticals and wellness markets in general have performed well during the pandemic. How has the pandemic impacted Orgain? Have you had to pivot due to supply chain, or labor issues?

Fry:

As a company during this pandemic, we have been extremely fortunate.  Our business impact has, overall, been a positive one. We have witnessed the phenomenon of pantry-loading as consumers look for shelf-stable options in the event food supplies run low. Our obstacles (and opportunities) initially were around maintaining stock.  Fortunately, we have a strong team in place that did an excellent job assuring that our online partners and retailers were able to easily and consistently restock.  Understandably, we have also seen a spike in interest in products that support immunity. It has been a welcomed revelation for many of our consumers to find that ingredients that support immunity, like vitamin D and zinc, already exist in many of our protein powders and nutrition shakes.

PW:

Please tell us more about Orgain’s expansion into pantry items like the pancake mix. How did that come about, and do you plan to expand those offerings?

Fry:

Expansion into adjacent categories with pantry items like our Orgain Protein Pancake Mix made a lot of strategic sense for us. Consumers are looking for cleaner versions of what already exists in the marketplace, and with our pancake mix we are able to offer a clean alternative that not only offers nutritional benefits but also tastes delicious.  This idea that we don’t need to sacrifice on taste to deliver high-quality products has been a proven key to our success.

Orgain continues to be strategic in planning out our strategy for adjacent product categories to continue our growth momentum and deliver what our consumers are looking for.Orgain's latest product offeringOrgain's latest product offering

PW:

What factors are influencing your current packaging choices?

Fry:

We take a number of factors into consideration when making our packaging choices, including product quality, sustainability, e-commerce shipping, and retail sales.

Sustainability is always something we assess when working on a new product and package. For example, if we can use a recycled resin or decrease our packaging volume altogether, that is a win-win – both positively affecting cost to us and environmental impact for our planet. We recently reduced the pack size on the majority of our plastic tubs for our powders. We carefully assessed how much we could reduce the pack size by while still including the same volume of product to offer to our consumers. Ultimately, this exercise allowed us to use less resin per ounce of product and enjoy more efficient shipping.

PW:

What can you tell us about the packaging for the powders – both the containers and the single-serve powders? How about the ready-to-drink packaging?

Fry:

Increased sustainability with our plastic protein powder tubs has been the most significant push for us to date because that is the area where we use the most packaging. We are currently assessing other areas within our portfolio in the ready-to-drink space as well as with our snack bars. We have some new ready-to-drink items under development that have a more sustainable packaging strategy, and we are proud and excited to roll that out in the near future. Additionally, we have started to transition to the bio-based HDPE caps made from sugarcane for our Tetra Pak packaging items.

PW:

Are you still using Tetra Pak for the drink packaging?

Fry:

We are still using Tetra Pak for many of our RTD offerings. It is a convenient and familiar package that our consumers trust. We continue to work with Tetra Pak to adopt their sustainable packaging options such as the bio-based cap.

PW Note: Orgain has created the “Green Initiative” program to reduce the impact of its packaging. According to its website, in 2020 the company reduced the amount of packaging in its containers by 40%, saving 30,000 pounds of plastic annually, cutting CO2 emissions by 884,000 kg, and saving 580,000 pounds of corrugate.


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