Big QuestionsOur work related to complex challenges.

The Challenge

Help a small San Francisco–based granola company scale for growth, while keeping its founding philosophy at heart.


New branding and packaging for Nana Joes' entire line of granola, granola bars, and cookie products, and a guide to operationalize the national rollout.

Nana Joes, a beloved San Francisco granola company, was born from an avid surfer’s desire to bring healthy breakfast back to the kitchen table. Embracing the philosophy that good food is about wholesome ingredients prepared with care, the startup took pride in carefully scraping each vanilla bean by hand and soon gained a devoted following at farmers markets around the Bay Area.

As Nana Joes’ reputation grew beyond the hills of San Francisco, the company asked IDEO to explore how to take a small company and scale the brand for national distribution, while keeping its heart and handcrafted ethos at its core.

Working with IDEO was one of the most positive and eye-opening experiences I have had as a small business owner. The team took the time to create several different designs to help Nana Joes packaging reflect the care and attention that goes into each and every bag of granola.

Michelle Pusateri, Owner, Nana Joes

The final step in packaging the Nana Joe's cookie set.

A team of IDEO designers set out to position Nana Joes for growth by developing a brand identity and packaging system that would resonate with customers and reduce operational complexity. The entire team went on factory tours and met with packaging suppliers to identify solutions that would be easily manufactured en masse, but still retain the familiar handcrafted feel. With mock-up packaging in hand, they hit local farmers markets to conduct live in-market prototyping with both loyal and new customers and met with retail buyers to get their real-time reactions to how the brand and packaging stood out on shelves.

The final deliverables included new branding and packaging for the entire line of granola, granola bars, and cookie products, as well as a guide for Nana Joes to operationalize the rollout by 2016.

The new branding and packaging system.

Consumer Goods and Services
Food and Beverage
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