This report presents the outcomes of a needs assessment study in 2001 in Himachal Pradesh – a hill state which has good road links from its main towns to the plains (and markets) of Punjab and Delhi. The assessment identified tomato as a key vegetable crop (high growth, significant area, high returns to the farmer), which is marketed outside the state. For transport out of the state, wooden boxes and plastic crates are used. Following the recent ban (3 years ago) by the State Government on tree cutting in the state, wood for packing boxes is now sourced from the neighbouring state of Punjab. This is expected to affect the supply and cost of these boxes, and reinforces the apparent need to explore alternative packaging options.