Upgrading OTC Sampling


Jim Gabilanes, senior vice president of sales marketing at Flexpaq Corp. (South Plainfield, NJ), sees a trend toward innovation in sample packaging.

“People are looking more and more for any way they can differentiate, and add value, as well as new ways to sample,” Gabilanes says. “For OTC products, customers are moving to soft finishes for a perception of higher quality, or adopting special opening systems, such as a channel spout with controlled flow.”

“We have been pushing the message that sampling drives sales,” he adds.

Flexpaq has developed the UDPaq for controlled dispensing of gels, creams, and lotions.

UDPaq is a thermoformed pack with a mesh system that provides a controlled flow after the user pulls back a layer of foil and squeezes a handle to dispense the product.

For up to 5-ml volumes, UDPaq delivers a focused application, where the user doesn’t have to touch the product,” says Gabilanes. “The packaging could be offered in displays at retail or at the doctor’s office.”

“We have a unit tool for manufacturing, and have made one small run. Now we’re fine-tuning the meshes with several designs that work with different product viscosities,” he adds.

Flexpaq’s CouPaq is a simpler alternative to fixing cards, coupons, or gift certificates to samples. CouPaq is a packet with an extended flap made of the same material as the pouch. The flap accommodates product information, UPC codes, and promotional materials. It can be perfed for tearing off.

“This provides one element of cost versus three—the sample, the attachment, and the cost of fixing them,” he says.


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