How Will We
Buy Milk in 2050?

VBAT Meet Market presents:
BNO Packaging Summer Class

Last Friday was a good day for Meet Market. With a beautiful Summer day and organising both a Creative Talk and a Packaging workshop at the BNO, the day was filled with excited young students and packaging enthusiasts.

VBAT was asked by the BNO to participate in their Packaging Summer Class, a day filled with engaging workshops and lectures by the finest of the Dutch Packaging industry. Of course, it was a logical choice that they picked me to go there.. (uh, packaging? let me google that)

Luckily, I had the talented and experienced Richard Mooij by my side to actually share some real knowledge.

Planning the Workshop

We created a workshop around the thought of preparing the participants for the future. How does Packaging look in the future? We need to think about food waste a lot more and we see supermarkets without any Packaging popping up everywhere. What will the future of Packaging be?

Thinking of a more specific question, we decided to take ‘milk’ as our core product. Holland’s most iconic supermarket product.
Asking the participants:

“How will we purchase Milk in 2050?”

BNO Summer Class

First of all; this initiative of the BNO is really great. It gives people that are not that familiar with Packaging an opportunity to discover everything about it and see if it’s something they want to specialise in.

Knowing that most of them have been listening to interesting lectures all day, we thought they might be suffering from information overload. Therefore, we decided to make our workshop as interactive and energetic as possible, starting off with an Energizer right after our introduction presentation about the work we do at VBAT.

The Energizer worked this way; I asked them to kneel on the ground and whisper very softly: “Go Bananas, B.A.N.A.N.A.S., Go Bananas B.A.N.A.N.A.S…

Every time we were getting louder, we all would come off the ground and start moving more and more, ending with a crazy party where everybody went BANANAS! (I was definitely the most Bananas, but hey! Going Bananas ain’t easy!)

Right after we asked them to do a quick ‘Check-In’ with us.

They needed to stand in a circle and tell the others their name and why they are interested in knowing more about Packaging. It was a big group and all the different answers were great to know at the start. Some discoveries were interesting as well, the participants had been in each others’ company all day, but some discovered during our check-in that they were in the same school or have been working together before.

Idea Speed Dating

The method that we used works extremely well if you want the teams to only build on each others’ ideas in a positive way.

We divided the teams in groups of 5 and prepared tables with large sheets of paper. Whenever we started the timer, they had 3 minutes to come up with an idea on ‘How to purchase Milk in 2050’. When the timer was finished, they rotated a place to the left to see what their group member had written or sketched out. They could either build on the idea or start a new one.

After an intense, quick and hot hour, the teams were ready to prepare the presentations with the idea that they picked out together. They received one sheet of paper where they got to explain their idea on, presenting it only 15 minutes later.

The Results

I must say, I was seriously impressed by the work that came out of the session. It seemed like the participants had a really good view of what the future of Packaging will look like.

Here are their ideas:

  • ‘KringloopKoe’; the package of milk is made from grass and hay-based material, so that when you finish drinking your milk, you can easily throw it into a field filled with cows and help the farmer feed his animals.
  • ‘Milk per Meter’; buying your milk in sealed packages in the exact amount you need, will reduce food waste.
  • ‘Twist your Milk’: this bottle enables the users to create cheese, buttermilk and regular milk from one bottle. By shaking the bottle in different ways, the product will come out in several options, while focusing on the experience of the buyer.
  • ‘Instant Cold Milk’: the twist-off cap of the bottle is infused with cooling elements which are activated when opening the bottle. When you buy the bottle, it will always tell you where the milk comes from. This enables you to know what exact cow it is from and start collecting cow-cards.
  • ‘Melkbaar’: this product is similar to ice cube satchels. By dividing the milk up in little compartments, the product gets different purposes. From small units that are ready to bring and drink, to already measured amounts of milk and lots of frozen options, giving many options for the buyer to use.
The focus in the results were; sustainability, less food waste and User Interface versus User Experience


The Dutch Packaging industry is blessed with highly skilled and passionate designers right now and in the future. It’s great to see the school options on this industry are expanding (WDKA just started a new course) and how many people are interested in making the world even more sustainable.

A huge thank you to the BNO for inviting VBAT and trusting us with going absolutely BANANAS with all the participants, we hope they enjoyed it!

If you’re extremely excited about packaging as well, don’t forget to submit your projects to the BNO Packaging Talent Award before August 31st.

Participants pitching their ideas to the group

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Annet is a Hyper Island alumni, currently living in Amsterdam and working as a Brand Strategist.
Also gives workshops in various creative methods, productivity & team development.