PLANT’s fictitious identity and packaging for The Drop Store paint a striking and scary scene
“We were hired by Publicis Groupe Benelux to develop the brand and packaging design for The Drop Store” as part of the United Nations’ 2023 Water Conference, the Reykjavik and São Paulo-based creative practice PLANT contextualise. “The concept revolves around how the water crisis will impact products in the near future,” they explain, fictionalising a range of affected items, such as a $299 toilet roll or $2,899 35g hamburger, revealing what a world with less water would be like.
Balancing the sincerity of the project with the commercial context of the issues, PLANT achieved an accessible and believable futuristic aesthetic. “We avoided the decadent atmosphere of Blade Runner or the aseptic portrayal found in Wall-E,” they recall.
Across the products, changing from item to item, the packaging presents an enormity of information in a way both understandable and powerfully pleasing, implementing small iconographic and typographic features crafted for specific objects. “Two key principles guided us in developing the identity: transparency and complete information,” PLANT explain, “aspects that we believe conscious people will increasingly demand in the future.”
“We applied the same logic to the packaging structure we proposed,” they continue, firstly prioritising the clear communication of the product’s information, secondly highlighting the specific concern behind the product, and thirdly, making sure to feature the necessary arguments, facts and figures. “Additionally, we aimed to create a sense of complexity and anticipation for the future,” PLANT detail, “thus, we embraced the idea extracted from a ‘nutritional table,’” ultimately resulting in an identity and packaging system that are foremostly informative. “To ensure the main message remains prominent,” they add, “we introduced standout colour labels that deliver the final call-to-action,” delegating three individual palettes to reflect the three significant challenges affecting water: excess, scarcity and pollution.
“UN Water Conference and Publicis were determined to emphasise these issues,” PLANT explain, with their primary communications based around the aforementioned trio. “Consequently, it became necessary to categorise the products accordingly,” they remark, using corn as an example. “it cannot be grown successfully in overly wet conditions,” PLANT tell us, “therefore, the packaging for corn will bear the ‘flooding’ label, indicating why the price is high for such limited quantities of corn;” a studious attitude indicative of PLANT’s considerate approach to the project, where each and every product is meticulously crafted to reveal the importance and necessity for water.