Coop is one of the biggest grocery chains in Sweden. Their online offer has been a success with a growing number of customers since the start back in 2008. But there was a problem; the carrier bags didn’t stand the handling. That’s when they contacted Stora Enso.
For Coop Online, it is of uttermost importance that both the goods and the package are of good quality and look good when delivered to the customer. The paper carrier bags must withstand lifting several times during packaging and distribution, without affecting the content or the look.
"We had problems with the carrier bags not withstanding the handling”, says Claes Hessel, CEO Coop Online. ”There were also several grocery items that were damaged during transportation. We contacted Stora Enso to find a cost effective solution to the problem”.
Packaging designer Per-Anders Carlsson at Stora Enso Packaging in Jönköping took on the assignment. To make a carrier bag from 100% corrugated cardboard was quickly dismissed; it wasn’t cost effective and was perceived unmanageable. Instead, a solution where an inner layer of corrugated cardboard forms the bottom and walls in the paper carrier bag was developed.
"The inner layer is delivered as flat sheets, which are quickly folded and applied to the carrier bags – a simple but very effective construction. The stability and resistance have increased substantially”, explains Hans Wrangenberg, sales representative at Stora Enso Packaging Solutions.
Positive effects immediately
The new inner layer is produced at Stora Enso Packaging Solutions in Jönköping and has been in use since September. Coop Online already sees positive effects:
"The feedback has been positive, both from the packaging staff and the customers, says Claes Hessel. "The amount of damaged goods has decreased. But the biggest win for us is that our customers are satisfied and spread the word about our smart carrier bags. It is a way for us to to differentiate; it shows that we are innovative and that we aim for high quality”.
Coop Online’s future packaging challenges
Coop Online’s sales have increased every year since the starting point in 2008. Today they do several thousands deliveries per week all around Sweden. Packaging and logistics are essential and Claes Hessel has several ideas for further improvement:
"A packaging solution with different temperature zones would be great, as our goods demands different storage temperatures – some are frozen and others need to be stored in room temperature. And a multi-pack solution for customers buying many packages of for example milk that can easily be moved to their own fridge”.
Hans Wrangenberg wraps up commenting Claes Hessels packaging vision:
"Very exiting challenges. We hope to continue the partnership with Coop Online to develop more innovative solutions for their online offer”.