In Blow to Arnell, Tropicana Drops Package Redesign

Last Updated Feb 23, 2009 10:56 AM EST

UPDATE: This fiasco has cost Tropicana $35 million, according to AgencySpy. Tropicana is to abandon its trendy new orange juice carton design by Arnell Group and revert back to its traditional packaging, featuring an orange with a straw in it, the New York Times says.

The move is the third high-profile design flop from Peter Arnell's Arnell group. Arnell's redesign of the Pepsi logo and product has been criticized for its vast expense, generic nature and pseudointellectual design philosophy; and BNET recently explained why Arnell's Peapod electric cars will not succeed with American drivers.

Tropicana parent Pepsico dropped the new packaging in response to consumer outrage. People are passionate about their OJ, apparently. (Disclosure: The author buys Tropicana.) The new design carried many of the same hallmarks of the Pepsi redesign -- san serif typefaces, plenty of open space, and the apparent aim of trying to make everything look like an iPod.

Arnell's reaction, per the Times:
Tropicana is doing exactly what they should be doing ... I'm incredibly surprised by the reaction ... I'm glad Tropicana is getting this kind of attention.
"I'm glad Tropicana is getting this kind of attention"? Yes, I'll bet his client is just loving it.

Personally, I liked one aspect of the new Tropicana package -- the orange-shaped cap. Very cute, and it demonstrated that even the least-considered part of a product can be enhanced.

The part I liked least (aside from the fact that it looked like everything else coming out of design agencies right now) is that the package contained so much white space that the box looked more like a carton of milk than OJ.

Images: Hat tip to Reactions, a design blog.

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