Home / Past Competitions / 2015 / Millstone


School:Virginia Tech
Team:Joe Dietrich, Erica Roesel, Tranchau Claudia Pham, Vina Le

The Millstone organic flour brand has a history that dates back to the Brandon Family who started growing and milling wheat on their farm in 1857 in Cartersville, Virginia. Since then the family wheat farm and flour production has grown. In 1930, Millstone began selling their flour in grocery stores. After years of serving our customers, Millstone continues to satisfy their customers today with all-natural, organic flour and now with a hassle-free package.

Before Millstone introduced the new flour package, your grandma would retrieve a five pound paper sack of flour from the pantry to make blueberry pancakes Sunday morning before church. Upon opening the paper sack, the flour clouds puff in her face and she sneezes. Before she measures one cup of flour for the pancakes, she refills her flour jar with the five pound flour sack. For grandma, it is easier to scoop the flour from her jar than from the paper sack. Her flour jar also keeps the flour fresher than the paper sack. After your grandma encounters these difficulties just to measure one cup of flour, she finally starts making the pancakes. Millstone’s package prevents grandma’s frustrating pancake making experiences.

The Millstone flour package has a two-part system consisting of the body and cover. The body is made of molded pulp, which is cheaper than thermoformed plastics, compostable, and biodegradable. Additionally, the bran, a by-product of flour production, is incorporated into the molded pulp packaging material, generating cost-savings for Millstone. The body is a rectangular shape with rounded edges, similar to the shape of a traditional paper flour sack; customers can easily recognize this rectangular shape as a flour package in the store. The grips on the back of the body allow easy product handling on and off customers’ shelves. The volume of the body holds five pounds of flour so bakers can always have flour on-hand at home. The cover is made of recyclable polypropylene, a plastic that is rigid to support the hinged, resalable snap-to-close lid. The lid forms a large opening so customers can easily scoop flour out of the package.

To assemble the whole package, the cover snaps onto a ridge of the molded pulp body. The cover and the body create a package that customers can use for flour storage and does not require them to repackage flour in an additional container. The graphics on the Millstone flour package emphasize the brand’s all-natural, rustic, and historical image. Because Millstone has an all-natural image, the graphics use natural colors like green and brown, the packaging materials are recyclable and biodegradable, and the flour is organic. The graphics have a rustic look to emphasize Millstone’s years of providing customer service and value since 1857. With Millstone’s unique, eye-catching package design, grandma does not have to hide her flour in the pantry; she leaves it on the counter.