Prolific studio nendo has designed a new packaging graphic for Shiawase Banana. This high-quality bananas grown on a plantation in a national park at altitudes of 1,000 metres or more, located in the north-central region of the island of Mindanao in the Philippines. Adhering to the requirement to use only organic fertilizers and the strict restriction on the use of pesticides, they became the first bananas to be awarded with an impressive 2 Stars at the International Taste and Quality Institute (iTQi) Superior Taste Awards in Belgium.


The name Shiawase Banana was derived simply from the fact the fruit makes all banana growers happy, drawing on the word “shiawase” which means “happiness” in Japanese. When nendo was asked to design the packaging, designers didn’t want to just come up with something extravagant because of its high quality: “that would be totally inappropriate for an environmentally friendly banana” nendo team explains. And so they decided to steer clear of boxes or packing material, and apply stickers on the surface of the banana peel. 


The sticker is double layered, with the first layer faithfully reproducing the textural feel and colours of the banana peel, even down to the lifelike bruises and discolouration. A segment of the sticker is partially peeled. When this is peeled off, the second sticker that indicates a message with an image of the flesh of the banana in the background emerges. Rather than just imposing some information about the banana, nendo created an atmosphere where you are compelled to read the story behind it.


Moreover, they designed a paper carrier bag to enable the people who have purchased the bananas to take them back home. The bag is designed so that when the string handle is removed you can easily pick out the bananas. If you spread open the bag you soon realize that it is made out of one sheet of paper in the shape of a large “banana leaf”. Nendo also put a detailed description of the Shiawase Banana on the reverse side of the bag to ensure that the banana can be enjoyed numerous time.

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all images © Akihiro Yoshida