Green Dot Symbol

An open design brief by
Two°Creative + The Brand Identity

For 30 years we have regularly seen The Green Dot symbol, however very few of us know its true meaning. Rather than indicating that the product or material it is on is recyclable, it, in fact, means something else entirely. Created in 1990, The Green Dot symbol merely means the company or brand has joined The Green Dot Scheme – indicating a financial contribution made towards a recycling system or causes, but does not mean their product is recyclable or recycled.

The main task presented in the brief was to eliminate the element of confusion and similarities between The Green Dot symbol and other packaging symbols. The new symbol presented here conveys the act of a financial contribution in a number of ways. Firstly, the form of a cupped hand is distilled into simplistic form. This cupped hand is creating an offering by holding a circular form which symbolises a coin to communicate the financial contribution component. Secondly, the circular form of the coin is split by using negative space, this communicates the act of a donation, as if the coin is being inserted into a collection. It was also a key decision to retain the dot/circular shape in the new symbol as this is already a key signifier in the current established symbol. The end result is simplistic, bold, meaningful and distinctive from other common packaging symbols.