I opened our beverage fridge at work yesterday and noticed a couple of cans of Sunkist in there. I didn’t remember ever seeing Sunkist in our drink case, but what stood out more to me was the new design. Apparently the logo and can were redesigned back in November 2008. With all the talk of the bad redesigns recently (Pepsi is terrible; Tropicana is criminal), it was refreshing to see something that actually works.

Sunkist packaging from 1981

The original logo (photo is from 1981, but it didn’t change since its debut in 1978) was pretty contemporary for its time. This new update brings the previous incarnation into the 21st century, but at the same time gives it a little retro feel. The typography reminds me of the Coca-Cola logo or the original Pepsi-Cola logo. I will concede to Armin at Brand New that the blue ocean swirls surrounding the type are a little much, but on the packaging, and really standing on the strength of the typography, it works. This mark has the perfect combo of contemporary and classic. Mmm… I think I’m going to have to make some Sunkist popsicles this weekend.

New Sunkist logo image from Brand New. Archival image of old packaging from Beverage World (May 1981), scan linked from Wikipedia.