Coromandel Mussel Kitchen

Derrick Lin


Designed by Curious Design, Auckland, New Zealand

The Coromandel Mussel Kitchen is a family-owned and operated mussel farming business, located on the Coromandel Peninsula of New Zealand. The Client’s business growth and development of vision meant that their original branding had become dated and outgrown. Curious Design was tasked with modernising their identity and creating a cohesive look that could be extended to multiple packaging formats (specifically cartons, pottle labels, pouches, and hang-sell) for a variety of product offerings and other applications – stationery, websites, and vehicles etc. It was important to the owners that we were able to capture the history of the business, and reflect their attitudes towards sustainable mussel farming practice and traditional values – those of the family and of rural New Zealand. The completed design needed to tell a story that was understood by the Foodservice Industry as well as to consumers who potentially had never eaten mussels before.

It was absolutely paramount that the visual identity of the Coromandel Mussel Kitchen reflected the honesty and care invested in this family enterprise. We achieved this by creating an iconic image of mussels being gathered in a traditional Maori flax basket. The style of the illustration, a clean woodcut effect, also further emphasised the hand crafted nature of the business. We then built a suite of elements around the core identity to add to the compelling story. This including sumptuous photography of fresh mussels, an exquisite rendition of a woven flax plant and carefully composed copy that makes the consumer feel that they are personally involved in the entire process. From harvesting the mussels in the clear New Zealand waters, through to adding natural, tasty ingredients to the end product-we are there with them all of the way.

The final result is a beautifully crafted identity that lives on its own merits, but also integrates successfully across packaging, point of sale and advertising platforms.

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