Imagine yourself grocery shopping. You’re able to walk from aisle to aisle, view each product, pick out the best one and know that you can open the package when you get home. No problem, right?
Now imagine you are blind, deaf or have a physical ailment such as arthritis. Getting from aisle to aisle becomes a lot harder, selecting ripe fruits and vegetables can be a challenge, determining which product is the right one is a struggle and maybe when you get home, you discover you can’t even open a jar of food because the lid is screwed on too tight. This is the everyday struggle that millions of Americans face. In fact, according to the CDC, one in four people in the U.S. are living with some sort of disability.
With advances in healthcare and assisted living services, it can be difficult to identify people who live with a disability or physical ailment. But the challenges associated with having a disability are a reality that companies in the food and beverage industry are continually looking to solve.
Companies that can successfully create their products with inclusivity in mind are able to tap into more potential market share. Imagine a brand that can create a product label that has braille instructions for users with vision impairment. Now, that product is accessible to approximately 1 million people over 40 years old in the U.S. who are blind.
Just this week, Degree Deodorant, a Unilever brand and maker of one of the world’s best-known antiperspirants, introduced what it calls the world’s first inclusive deodorant for people with visual impairment and upper limb motor disabilities: Degree Inclusive. The new inclusive deodorant features:
• A hooked cap design and integral handle on the base for one-handed usage
• Magnetic closures that make it easier to take the cap off and put it back on for users with limited grip and/or vision impairment
• Enhanced grip placement for easier application for users with limited grip or no arms
• A braille label with instructions for users with vision impairment
• A larger roll-on applicator to reach more surface area per swipe
By including all of those features, Degree can market the deodorant to people living with vision impairment, missing limbs, strength impairments or other motor disabilities. This opens the door for Degree to market their deodorant as one of the most inclusive hygiene products available, enabling them to gain more of the market.
But it’s not just Degree that is making strides to be more inclusive. For example, many businesses across different industries have been printing braille labels/instructions for a while now. Some examples include financial statements, utility bills, bus schedules, brochures and business cards. And when businesses across industries make an effort to be more inclusive, it’s only for the betterment of society, and that’s something that the food and beverage industry is trying to tackle with more inclusive packaging designs.
At CCT, we were founded with that principle in mind. Years ago, a close friend who was undergoing cancer treatment suddenly found herself struggling to open food jars due to the chemo draining her strength. She came to us and asked, “Why isn’t there a jar lid on the market that is designed to be easier to open for people like me who don’t have the strength to open a normal jar?” And that’s where the idea of the EEASY Lid was born.
We set out with the goal to make jarred food more accessible to those who have a disability or physical ailment and live on their own. The EEASY Lid is the first jar lid innovation in more than 75 years, and we’re proud that it allows more people who previously might have avoided jarred foods the opportunity to access more products. That’s why inclusivity matters!