It isn’t the first time people have incorporated bar codes into the design of things. In fact, I believe I saw three different periodical covers last year that used this same technique. So the concept is far from original.
But Duane Reade—which, to New Yorkers, is synonymous with pharmacy—recently took this one step further by working their product bar codes into iconic metropolitan imagery. The Chinatown Delight—which I always thought was either a extra surprise at the end of a massage, or the revelation that she’s both my daughter and my sister (Don’t get my reference? Then forget it, Jake, it’s Chinatown)—uses a subway train. The Honey Roasted Peanuts uses a NYC cityscape. The Blanched Roasted Peanuts uses the Statue of Liberty. So while the imagery and concept are New York at it’s tritest, the integration of both the bar code and symbolism into the main graphic elements on this packaging makes it pretty unique and beautiful.