Marjorie Restaurants opened in 2003 by owner Donna Moodie as a homage to her Mother and hostess extraordinaire, Marjorie. Today, that extended tradition continues with a Capital Hill Seattle restaurant and catering business and now her very own line of Miss Marjorie's plantains. Inspired by her childhood growing up in Jamaica and perfected from values instilled by Donna's mother, Miss Marjorie's are now available at fine stores virtually everywhere you turn in Seattle.
Like with most businesses and 'makers' who are focused on growing their brands, packaging was not something that inspired Donna to get out of bed and get after it. Rather, it was more of a chore. That all changed though when retail partners with 'real' requirements wanted to buy her product. Then it became the difference of getting added and not. Good problem to have, but where do you start, right?
We began working with Donna on inner-trays for her retail packaging which quickly extended to retail display boxes and now full shipping and carton. Donna actually was far ahead of many of the folks we work with - she made some very good decisions early on in standardizing trays and package sizes. Lots to work with and grow into.
There are still lessons learned though....and I am sure she would agree, it's never too early to start thinking about your retail packaging strategy and what it will look like when your product goes from 1 partner to 10 or even more. Start early and be disciplined. Learn what your target retailers require, find common threads between the various partners and standardize packaging when you can. Yeah for Donna. Yeah for Miss Marjorie's. Yeah for hitting it hard early.