Clever Packaging Drives Kiwi Consumption

Zespri Fruit Pillbox Nudges People To Eat Fruit

Combining modern-day behavioral theory with the concept behind a 190-year-old medicine delivery system, the brand strategy and creative hub Speakeasy Knowledge Brokers has developed a simple yet striking way to help international kiwi marketer Zespri increase consumption of its nutritious fruit line.

Consumer research conducted by Zespri in its Singapore test market found that while the vast majority of adult respondents — 93% — said they want to eat more fruit, more than half of them did not eat fruit daily, mostly because they simply forget to do so.   Collaborating with business transformation company The Shed 28, Speakeasy Knowledge Brokers enlisted a customized team from its open talent global network of more than 250 strategists, creatives, and designers to curate and develop a simple, intuitive solution: the Zespri Fruit Pillbox.

The Fruit Pillbox packaging is modeled after pill boxes that have long been used for medications and supplements. The packaging has seven compartments labeled from Monday to Sunday, with a Zespri SunGold™ kiwifruit in each compartment. It is intended to nudge people to eat fruit every day. Working with packaging specialists PackFora, the packaging is made with recyclable material and vegetable-based ink.  As a commitment to inclusivity, the days of the week are also imprinted in braille, making it accessible to the visually impaired.



In addition to listing the days of the week, one side of the packaging includes a “Why a kiwi a day?” section, with a list of the fruit’s nutritional benefits. Initial consumer response has been very positive.  Zespri conducted a follow-up survey through a QR code printed on the Fruit Pillbox to track consumer reaction and behavioral changes, and 75% of respondents said the packaging successfully reminded them to eat a kiwi each day. In addition, 71% said they are likely to repurchase kiwifruit in this packaging, and 67% liked the design.

“People are far more disciplined when it comes to taking their daily medications,” said Marcello Magalhães, Speakeasy Knowledge Brokers founder and chief strategy officer. “One reason why is a low-tech invention that’s been in use for almost two centuries: the pillbox, which an International Electronic Journal of Medicine study found improves medication adherence by as much as 68%.  We took these insights and developed a simple design idea that is easily recognizable and effectively addresses a historically complex challenge of trying to change human behavior, where billions of dollars were invested with little success.” States Marcus Kawamura, Speakeasy Knowledge Brokers partner and chief creative officer: “The key to the packaging is its simplicity, using intuitive visual design and a clear, uncluttered aesthetic,”  “The inviting packaging balances innovation with captivation and is informative with attention to detail and functionality.”

In a clever design touch, the Fruit Pillbox branding appears with a strikethrough on the “pill” portion of the name. Creative in-store POP displays resemble enlarged versions of the Fruit Pillbox, using the same look, branding, and flip-tops to house the packaging. The displays stand out in produce sections, which typically lack examples of creativity and innovation. The launch was also supported by a social media campaign.



“Zespri believes in inspiring positive behavioral change towards a healthier community through the power of remarkable marketing,” said Ng Kok Hwee, general manager, Global Marketing, Zespri. “Inspired by Nudge theory, where consumers are subtly, gently, and repeatedly encouraged to make positive changes in their behavior, the Fruit Pillbox aims to encourage a positive change in the eating habits of consumers, making fruit consumption a seamless and enjoyable part of their daily routine.”

Founded by ad veteran Marcello Magalhães in 2019, Speakeasy Knowledge Brokers is a brand strategy and creative hub for global clients such as KraftHeinz, Coca-Cola, Unilever, and Burger King, among others.  Highly awarded creative Marcus “Kawa” Kawamura joined in 2023 as partner and CCO to broaden the Speakeasy offering, turning it into a strategic, creative, and production hub that pulls in the best talent from its global network of 250 senior-level strategists, creatives, designers, researchers, and entrepreneurs as a team to handle specific brand challenges.