Here’s something I view as a serious design flaw. It involves food packaging, so buckle up. There’s a standard for containing goopy, spreadable foods and it usually takes the form of a short, round, plastic tub with a re-sealable lid. Hummus, salsa, and feta cheese are a few products that come to mind that share this type of packaging.
Under the re-sealable lid is a thin plastic film that’s glued to the outer edge of the tub. This is removed when you bring the item home and are ready to dig in. And here’s where we can separate the package designers into two camps: those that make it easy on us, and those that make it hard (probably while laughing).
The bad camp glues the plastic film around the edge, with not nearly enough of an overlap. The overlap is crucial for being able to grab the excess film with your fingers, pulling it off quickly and easily. Removing the film in this scenario involves piercing with a sharp knife, then peeling it back. The pierced film nearly always comes in contact with the food below, resulting in a messy removal. It’ll also split into several pieces, requiring multiple peels.
The good camp leaves a little “tab” of excess film at one spot on the tub’s edge. this little tab is big enough to grab with your fingers, easily pulling the entire film off the tub without piercing. No mess.
Often, I end up pathetically reaching for the tab, rotating the tub all the way around until I find nothing. And that’s when I become sad.
Yes, this stuff is important to talk about.