New research from valuation firm Brand Finance has estimated that the spread of plain packaging to the beverage industry would result in close to $300bn in brand value losses, with The Coca-Cola Company and PepsiCo among the companies with most value at risk. The report warns that the true economic toll will likely be much higher.

Global designers unite to draw attention to, and create debate around, the issues of health warnings and marketing restrictions on packaging, and whether there are more effective solutions to change consumer behaviour. The first in a series of global Endangered Species hackathons will be launched in London on 3rd October with a live event, and will run for a month online.

The global creative industry today unites to save the cultural heritage brands, which face unprecedented challenges around the world as legislators, government bodies and single interest lobby groups press for graphic warnings and censorship to be used on many food and beverage products. The challenge is spearheaded by Endangered Species, a membership organisation supporting brands that are looking to find more effective ways to promote responsible consumption of products including fizzy drinks, fast food, alcohol and sugar through packaging design.

Leading names across design, marketing and branding have come together to demonstrate their support for the Design Hackathon and call for companies and individuals to take part.  The hackathon will run from October 3rd and will involve agencies including JKR Global and Sedley Place, collaborating on design solutions to raise awareness of responsible consumption whilst enabling brands to keep their creative integrity.

The ideas and designs from around the world will be collated, edited and presented to global media and brand owners via an interactive website. Ultimately Endangered Species wants brand owners to put these ideas into practice, helping consumers understand how to lead healthy, responsible and positive lives whilst enjoying their products.

Endangered Species Founder Ron Cregan said: “There is absolutely a sensible health debate to be had around responsible consumption, but draconian legislation cannot be the solution. Brand identity is a fundamental right for brand owners and proposed government measures will have a devastating impact on global brands including much loved favourites which are part of our cultural heritage as well as artisan producers who will be denied the right to express their identity. Creating positive and educational messages that will help change consumer behavior and avoid misunderstanding is well within the design community’s capabilities and we have launched the Design Hackathon as a platform to facilitate this.”