The Sonoco Institute

The Sonoco Institute was created to exploit the synergies that exist between the graphic communications and packaging science departments. It is the only university program in the country with this one-of-a-kind multidisciplinary approach to packaging as a core competency.

CUshop™ Grand Opening

The Sonoco Institute of Packaging Design and Graphics at Clemson University celebrated the grand opening for the Consumer Experience Laboratory, CUshop™, this past Tuesday. The kick-off launched CUshop, a public service initiative, after years of research on how to best observe, study, and optimize the effectiveness of packaging from the standpoint of the consumer. With the generous support of Mr. Harris A. Smith, the lab is now in full operation - where packages are placed in a realistic and immersive shopping environment and the reactions of consumers are collected by advanced biometric tracking technology. 

Tuesday was filled with success stories from Clemson University administration, faculty and students, as well as results from 4 major research studies. Mr. Harris A. Smith completed the day with an official ribbon cutting for the lab; guests were allowed to participate in an on-going test concerning the effect of structural design on consumer attention.

At the Sonoco Institute of Packaging Design and Graphics, it is now possible to track consumer response to packaging in vivid detail. Questions concerning the effect of size, color, and shape - which have traditionally been aesthetic attributes, can now be scientifically quantified and studied. In addition, the potential shopability of the product can also be observed. 

CUshop is now open for business, and is the first Consumer Experience Laboratory of this caliber in the world. To learn more, visit