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The term applies almost exclusively to ice cream packaging design, where the switch to a squround from paperboard bricks, cylindrical half-gallons and other containers is motivated by consumer preference, as well as cost effectiveness. These packages are more rectangular than square, but the side edges are rounded, while top and bottom surfaces are completely flat. Squround packaging affords some of the consumer appeal of traditional cylindrical packaging, while also packing tightly like brick-shaped square cartons.
Pierre’s French Ice Cream, when announcing their switch in May 2003, cited several reasons:
- it fits better in home freezers
- it's easier and less messy to scoop out the ice cream
- it makes more efficient use of retail shelf space
- it improves brand recognition (over the round half-gallon) since the flatter front is a more legible "billboard" for each flavor
Smith Dairy, which made the switch that same year for its Ruggles line of ice cream, cited other reasons. They note that the packaging makes tampering more evident, and offers better protection from freezer burn.
Although squrounds are available in traditional half-gallon sizes, there exists a trend toward marketing non-traditional 56-ounce, and recently even 48-ouce sized cartons. The downsizing in carton size has not seemed to negatively affect unit sales. Mayfield Dairy, which announced the switch to squround cartons in January 2003, told Food Engineering in April that they expect to sell the same number of 56 oz. units in 2003 as it sold 64 oz. cartons in 2002. Breyers, which in 2000 was an early adopter of the smaller package for its "Ice Cream Parlor" brands, as of 2005[update] uses the smaller package across all its ice cream flavors. In 2008, they changed to an even smaller 48 oz container.