Your brand, safety and eco-concerns are all wrapped up together

With takeout sales skyrocketing, restaurant operators would be wise to give some thought to what their takeout packaging says about their restaurant. We all know that we eat with our eyes first, and the packaging of carryout food can make a big impression on your customers. Let’s take a look at what customers are looking for in takeout packaging.

Suitable for the Food

The most important aspect of takeout packaging is making sure containers are appropriate for the food itself. Consider packaging in a variety of sizes, so that you can separate components of a dish (sauces or dressings on the side, for example). Also consider the way the packaging interacts with the food. If you are hoping to keep fried chicken crispy, for example, consider avoiding plastic clamshells, which can trap in moisture.

You also want to give some thought to the next steps your customers will take once the food arrives. Is packaging spill-resistant, easy for the customer to open, microwave safe, reusable? These are all ways to improve the guest experience. Try different options for each dish and test them to see which ones work best for your menu.

Reflects the Brand

The ‘unboxing’ experience your guests have is one of the few opportunities you have to make a great impression visually. Takeout dining should evoke a feeling of dining in your restaurant. With that in mind, try to choose materials and labels that make sense for your brand. Your packaging should echo the same colors, fonts, and logos that customers see in your existing branding.

One way to bring brand elements through your packaging is to order branded stickers and labels that you can customize as needed. That way you can order in bulk without being tied to labels with specific menu items, which may change over time. Custom ink stamps are also a low-cost way to add branding to packaging you may already have.


Tamper-evident packaging gives your customers the confidence that your cooks and drivers have handled their food properly. With health and safety concerns at the forefront of everyone’s mind, this is especially important. This is one easy step to show customers that your restaurant takes their wellbeing seriously.

Food is Labeled and Instructions are Included

When the food arrives, your customers want to know clearly what each item is and if there are any steps that need to be taken to add sauces or reheat. Take the guesswork out of their experience with professional, branded labels and instruction cards.


As takeout becomes increasingly common, guests are beginning to tune in to the ecological footprint of their meal choices. Many customers are averse to plastic foam, for example, because of the time it takes to break down in landfills. Whether you opt for recyclable or biodegradable materials, making the investment in eco-friendly packaging shows your customers that you share their concerns for the environment and that you’re doing your part to help.

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