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Bell sips on new tea packaging

Ordinarily, there’s not too much to get excited about when you’re talking about standard black tea. But the folks at Bell Tea & Coffee Company seem pretty chuffed with their redesign efforts for their Bell Original tea packaging—efforts that were apparently one and a half years in the making, would you believe.  A quick glance at the new box versus its predecessor might not reveal too much by way of change, but according to Bell’s marketing manager Jessica Bailey, the changes have been aplenty. And like recent branding efforts of late (Sealord and Z Energy), Bailey says the new look comes after extensive consumer research by way of focus groups. 

“When you play with a Kiwi icon, you need to work out how you can change it without turning the brand loyalist off, whilst still giving it a contemporary feel,” says Bailey. 

Coats Design from Auckland, who have had a long standing relationship with Bell, are behind the physical redesign. So what’s new? Matt Greenwood, described as the “Tea Guy” for Bell Tea & Coffee Company explains the front of the box is “much more modern”. He puts this down to the addition of new colour and the use of “two steaming mugs of tea and a beautiful shot of the tea pouring from the spout of a teapot”. 

The beauty of tea, says Bailey, is in watching it pour. 

“It makes it more dynamic,” she says.

The iconic red colour of old is retained in the new look, but with a much more gradient-like effect, resulting in what Bailey describes as “a bit of movement and light rather than being a two dimensional colour”. 

Green also makes its debut on the packaging, giving it “a bit of a zing”, according to Bailey. It also symbolises freshness. 

“People respond well to green because it represents freshness,” she says. 

And while its arguable if anyone would notice, there’s a slight name change too. There are a number of tea brands in the Bell stable now, but what of the company’s first and traditional black tea? For a long time it’s just been known as Bell. Bailey says company wanted to give it a more distinctive name and after researching viable alternatives, “Bell original” came out tops. 

The new...

Versus the old