The Bacon Dilemma

For a recent job interview, I was given a challenge: Solve a real-life user-experience problem that does not involve software or the internet.

I decided TESCO's unhelpful bacon packet was primed for some problem-solving.

The Problem

The top piece of bacon is furthest away from the opening of the packet. This means...

  • The fiddly pack must be opened fully on first use

  • The meat dries out quickly, making it progressively less appealing

  • The flap gets greasy and untidy in the fridge

How could this happen?

Analyse the problem,

understand the process,

find a solution.

You can see here the bacon is sliced (1), a rectangular tray is thermoformed in a rectangle below the meat (2), the film lid is applied from a branded roll (3) and finally it is boxed for shipping (4). 

The Solution

Turning the meat - requires retooling/adding staff, plus unpredictable knock-on

Turning the pack - requires re-tooling/adding staff

Moving the tab on the film lid - requires no resources beyond implementation 

At stage 3) the lid applicator heats a film lid onto the plastic tray. It takes it's instructions of where to heat the lid from a 'packaging profile' which is basically a digital file with instructions. If we update the packaging profile to suit our needs, we can put the opening tab wherever we like.

So we change the packaging profile from this...

...To this.

Problem solved.