We The Italians | Italian design: Pandoro and Panettone: a Sweet Design

Italian design: Pandoro and Panettone: a Sweet Design

Italian design: Pandoro and Panettone: a Sweet Design

  • WTI Magazine #170 Dec 18, 2023
  • 1177

Christmas sees on the tables of Italians the triumph of two traditional desserts par excellence: Pandoro and Panettone. During the Festive season of 2022, according to research by Unione Italiana Food, the total production of the two leavened products amounted to 73,502 tons, worth 552.1 million €.

Pandoro and Panettone also very popular abroad: the total export production of the two products touched 14,000 tons, worth 105 million €. Everyone likes the big festive leavened goods, so much so that in the last year more than 95 % of Italians consumed at least one.

Panettone (81. %) and Pandoro (82.2 %), as far as preferences are concerned, play it practically on a par, with one annotation: consumption of the former prevails among adults, while young people prefer the latter.

There is no doubt that the two sweets embody the spirit of tradition: when it comes to choosing the type of product, the majority of Italians prefer the classic versions (66.0% for Panettone, 69.3% for Pandoro).

For some years, however, there has been an increasing use of Design to introduce elements of Innovation in the packaging of panettone and pandoro, usually anchored to very standard and established shapes.

Design, in the context of these initiatives, deploys its possibilities of intervention at a wide range, aiming to make packaging more appealing and/or improve its functional aspects and/or make it more sustainable.

The most innovative projects are often related to products of an artisanal nature, whose manufacturers, not being able to count on particularly well-known Brands, aim to stand out for the creativity of their packaging.

Design, in fact, is a valuable tool to highlight the quality of the product and the originality of its workmanship, recalling-through materials, colors and shapes-the values of authenticity, exclusivity and genuineness.

Let us consider, by way of example, some peculiar entrepreneurial proposals.

An interesting case in point is the initiative of the Giovanni Cova & Co. pastry shop, which this year dedicates its two new gourmet panettone cakes to Giuseppe Verdi, on the occasion of the 210th anniversary of the birth of the great Emilian musician.

The tribute to Verdi was made possible by the company's association with the Archivio Storico Ricordi and is expressed in the images of the wrappers, depicting some details taken from the costumes of his operas, as well as in the iconic portrait of the composer, reproduced in the metal box.

Verdi's evocation continues inside the wrappings, where postcard-sized reproductions of five different watercolors created by renowned illustrator Leopoldo Metlicovitz are placed. The small works reproduce images and atmospheres of Villa Sant'Agata, the famous home of Giuseppe Verdi.

Each package also contains an original bookmark, bearing a signature taken from the Maestro's autographed notes, preserved in the Ricordi Historical Archives.

Design, on the other hand, is translated into its more technical soul in the project of Pasticceria Carletti, which offers its own Pampepato for the Christmas season-in addition to Pandoro and Panettone.

The packages of these products, printed with Pantone color on 250-gram white/grey cardboard, made more durable with a protective matte lamination, are characterized by the coupling with a digitally printed one-color wood sheet.

The boxes are thus enhanced by the use of a material as innovative as it is ancient as wood, which until now has been considered unsuitable for flexible packaging production.

This original feature was made possible through collaboration with Inwood International, a company that has patented an invention called "Legnetto."

This is a product derived from a process for the preparation of semi-finished products suitable for the production of packaging in various wood essences, characterized by bending that does not give rise to breakage and returns to its original state throughout the life of the box.

In the Pasticceria Aroma proposal, however, Design is expressed on the level of its more canonical functions.

We are talking about a packaging that is distinguished not so much by technical features or processing devices as by its shape, which is original and distinctive.

The material used is rather traditional, being a 400-gram GC1 cardboard to which a matte lamination has been added, but the die cut has a decidedly more complex and creative composition.

The packaging, in fact, results in a parallelepiped with a hexagonal base, which is a clear departure and significantly different from the more standard shapes found on the market.

Here we can appreciate a packaging that reinvents and revolutionizes the image of an extremely traditional product, transforming it into a kind of vibrant visual display, a genuine eye-catcher at points of sale.

The project was awarded by Dieline Awards 2019 among the best packaging in the Prepared Food sector and is featured on the World Brand Design Society and Packaging of the World websites.

Finally, the communicative value of Design is emphasized in the project created by the Metalli Lindberg studio in Venice for Ecor.