That’s a Wrap: The Best and Worst Packaging of 2022

We would like to thank our community for making this the most successful campaign yet. ‘That’s a Wrap’ received the largest number of nominations and votes it has ever seen through our social media pages and online form.

Worst Packaging of 2022

2022 brought back some familiar foes but we also found some new offenders. The top 5 worst culprits of 2022 were:

5 – Pre-packaged sealed trays – This was a debut entry on our list, commonly used for food products such as meat and seafood. These trays are almost impossible to open by hand and many consumers have to ask loved ones to open them or resort to creative opening methods. Participants said they used tools such as knives to open the “stubborn” packaging. Even after cutting open these trays with knives or scissors the packaging still presents a hazard as the cut edge is sharp.

4 – Jars – Both plastic jars and glass jars with metal lids are problematic for consumers with arthritis. Many participants said that the experience was painful and required great strength to open this form of packaging. A lot of jars even cause issues for able-bodied people, let alone those who have conditions that hinder their grip strength.

3 – Plastic bottles – A repeat offender in the hard to open category and a previous winner of the campaign. The small and hard to grip caps were identified as problematic by voters. Our community also shared stories of needing to ask strangers in public or family at home to access their beverages. Others used tools to try and break the initial seal or gave up completely.

2 – Medication packaging (screw cap) – The runners up for the worst packaging of 2022 and was very close to taking out the top spot. Past research has shown that hard to open packaging can mean that consumers are unable to use their medication when needed. We also heard frightening stories of people using tools like knives to open the packaging, destroying the lid to get it open. Many participants described the anxiety felt when confronted with the task of opening certain medicine packaging. Others noted that they felt foolish having to ask workers in the chemist to pre-open their medication for them.

1 – Push through tablet trays/ blister packs – Featured in previous years of the campaign, blister packs claim the top spot this year. Similarly to its second place finalist (medication packaging), not being able to access medication in a timely manner is problematic and a serious issue. With participants stating that it “causes pain” and the “super thick packaging” makes it impossible to access the tablets.


Best Packaging of 2022

We had a great variety of nominations this year including products such as coffee sachets, resealable bags and laundry detergents. The winner for the best packaging of 2022 is the Dettol hand sanitiser dispenser (200 ml). Easy to use and initially open. The dispenser fits comfortably in the hand and requires minimal force to break the opening seal. We appreciate all the nominations and votes in this year’s campaign and we look forward to educating the packaging industry about your experiences to help us advocate for more accessible packaging. If you have any additional feedback on packaging you can let us know by using our Packaging Feedback form.


About That’s a Wrap: the Best and Worst Packaging of 2022

The annual social media campaign is designed to highlight types of packaging consumers have struggled with or found easy-to-open in the past 12 months. Your insights will assist our Accessible Design Division in identifying if particular packaging is becoming easier or harder-to-open over time. Your responses will also be used to educate the packaging industry about your experiences with packaging and hopefully reduce incidences of wrap-rage in the future.

Making a nomination

You can describe a general packaging format like glass jars with metal lids e.g. jam jar, or opening features like an induction seal commonly found on tomato sauce bottles.

ORYou can go into more detail by naming a specific product.

The rules

What does the ‘worst packaging’ mean?

Packaging that counts as the worst:

  • you couldn’t open it at all
  • you opened it after a struggle
  • caused you pain
  • hurt your self-opening it
  • had to use a tool, like a knife or scissors, to open it
  • had to ask someone else to open it for you
  • caused you to damage or spill the contents
  • caused a brief moment of hesitation, anxiety or fear about opening it due to previous negative experiences.

What does the ‘best packaging’ mean?

We are looking for packaging that is genuinely easy-to-open, not just slightly better then a really bad alternative. We may decide to disqualify and exclude packaging from the final tally, if:

  • Packaging still needs a tool to open it, including knives, scissors, grip matts or other creative tools
  • Packaging that consumers commonly hurt themselves opening
  • Nominations that seem to be not genuine e.g. sarcastic responses or if nominations appear to be made by employees of particular manufacturers or brand owners if its believe they are trying to influence the result.

You shouldn’t have to struggle with any packaging, but until that happens we want to know what packaging consistently makes your life easier. We may also buy samples of nominations to confirm that they are in fact reasonably accessible.

Other criteria

  • You can make nominations through our online form, as well as our social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram, as long as we are tagged in it and can see the response. If you prefer, you can call or write to us. Your experiences are what counts!
    • Tag us:
      • Use the hashtag: #bestandworstwrap
      • Twitter@ArthritisAust
      • Facebook: @ArthritisAustralia
      • Instagram: @ArthritisAustralia
  • Each Facebook ‘like’ or ‘comment’ agreeing with a nomination will be accepted as a vote towards that nomination. When nominations are made as descriptions rather then specific product names, we will group the nominations and votes as best as possible when tallying the final results.
  • You can nominate multiple products, but only one vote per person will be counted per nomination. In other words you can’t ‘vote’ for your own nomination. Here’s how it works:
    • Amy on Facebook nominates a product, which is then counted as one vote towards Product X
    • Bob comments on Amy’s post in support of that nomination, this will be counted as a vote towards the same Product X
    • Melissa then ‘likes’ both Amy’s nomination and Bob’s comment on Facebook, only one of these reactions will be counted, so one additional vote would go towards Product X
    • Max nominates Product X through the online form, this is counted as one vote towards that product
    • A total of four votes would be tallied for Product X.
  • If you specifically name a product and brand/manufacturer in the campaign we will try our best to contact them to let them know a nomination was made regarding their product. If you provide more details through our online form and provide an email address, we can follow up with any additional details needed to make a complaint. We will also ask your permission to share your contact details with the manufacturer so they can contact you directly about your experience. The more they know about the issues the more likely they are to make changes.
  • We love to hear stories about your experiences, both good and bad, as we use these to educate the packaging industry about your needs. If you have photos or videos then that’s even better, please upload them and tag us so they can be counted as a nomination. Alternatively you can send the file directly to us at [email protected]
  • Nominations will be open for all of December 2022 and the top responses will be announced on social media in late January.
  • Arthritis Australia will choose to tally the products based on the product name, packaging category or packaging opening feature. Arthritis Australia reserve the right to interpret nomination and votes as well as promote diverse selection of category winners.
  • This is a survey about Australian packaging, so please only participate if you have been opening packaging bought in Australia. If you’re in New Zealand, let us know and we can pass your responses onto our New Zealand counterparts, who are also trying to improve packaging for consumers.