• Transform magazine
  • October 22, 2020


Cowan partners with Jack's to deliver 90 new packaging designs


Gaining a foothold in an established industry is almost always difficult, but with the backing of both its parent brand’s experience and its design agency’s palette, the UK’s new supermarket offer Jack’s appears ready to take on the challenge.

Cowan, an independent design agency based in London, has collaborated with Jack’s, a subsidiary of the UK groceries giant Tesco, to develop 90 new packaging designs for its wide selection of discounted products. Cowan London was appointed as the strategic and design lead on the project, and worked collaboratively as part of a wider agency mix. 

Jack’s opened its first store in September 2018, and the stores were created to offer the consumer the ability to buy high quality food and beverages which are both affordable and made from British ingredients. The new designs are engineered to strongly reflect the three essential tenets of Britishness, taste and expertise which define Jack’s brand while simultaneously offering eclecticism in the presentation making the value shopping experience more exciting. Elizabeth Finn, managing director for Cowan, says, “Just as Jack’s is taking a different approach to value retail, we need a new way forward for own label design. We did this using principles instead of guidelines and taking influence from the origins of the products as well as brand.”

Central to the new packaging strategy was Jack’s pride in not only its English roots, but also that 80% of all Jack’s products are grown, reared or made in the UK. This is demonstrated by the prominent featuring of the Union Jack across multiple designs, as well as vibrant displays of classic British scenery such as the countryside and beach. Cowan also decided to distinguish a product’s category with an appropriate corresponding design scheme reflecting the category’s most essential qualities. For example, the cereal products feature a rising sun to indicate the refreshing feeling of beginning a new day with a hearty meal. By delivering the promise of consistent brand value through these designs, Cowan wanted to ensure consumers’ trust with Jack’s for years to come, even with its status as a newcomer to the groceries industry.

Another reason Cowan separated categories by design was to increase the value felt by purchasing Jack’s products. Shopping for products with a monolithic design can become unappealing quickly regardless of the bargain available, but with Cowan offering 90 vibrant, sleek and diverse designs, the shopping experience can become exciting for the buyer.