Metsä Board’s Better with Less – Design Challenge, Design & Innovation Director Cyril Drouet

Abandon the rules to create new conventions

As the head of the jury of Metsä Board’s Better with Less – Design Challenge, Design & Innovation Director Cyril Drouet explains the contest’s goals, motivations, and the packaging innovations he hopes it will inspire.


Our expectations for the Better with Less – Design Challenge are wide open. Personally, I would like to see a variety of creative designers, engineers, thinkers, environmental ambassadors and futurists bringing as many ideas as possible to this platform.

The design challenge seeks to find environmentally-friendly and functional packaging solutions for some of the world’s most frequently used consumer packages, for example in cosmetics, dry foods, e-commerce, takeaway meals and wellness. At the same time, Metsä Board also wants to share inspiration for sustainable solutions more broadly.

The ultimate goal is to inspire debate around sustainable design also in other industries such as automotive, construction and clothing, so that these other segments can reflect on our design challenge and create their own. If we all reconsider our approach together, we will have a far better chance of changing consumer habits and making a positive contribution to the environment on a global scale.
As chairman of this competition, I couldn’t have hoped for a better jury. The fact that we are all living and working in different parts of the world will bring a rich and diverse approach to the judging process. It’s also fair to say that each jury member has a great depth of experience in their own field, and we are bound to learn a lot from each other in discussing each entry.

Cyril Drouet, Design & Innovation Director at Metsä Board
Cyril Drouet, Design & Innovation Director at Metsä Board

A fresh approach

I hope to see a fresh approach in all design categories, including conceptual thinking with potentially new packaging processes. I would like our candidates to explore the possibilities that emerge when they abandon the rules to create new conventions. Good packaging is not just about how it protects, looks or opens. The ecological implications must also be considered. It’s definitely time to challenge the ways disposable packaging is manufactured, consumed and recycled.

The most exciting entries will show an awareness of ecological implications together with enthusiasm for imagining new lifestyles and the determination to change the packaging world. I believe you must lead by example, and prove to new generations that everything is possible, regardless of conventional thinking, materials and manufacturing processes.

When you create something new, the design process is a long journey with multiple obstacles. It’s a voyage into the unknown, and success is never certain, but so satisfying when it does arrive. This is what inspires and excites me the most, and I hope very much that it can inspire all the designers entering the competition too.

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