Monday, October 25, 2010

The Incredible Shrinking Products!

The incredible shrinking product is something that really makes me angry. I first noticed it a while back when my Breyer’s ice cream container seemed smaller. At first I thought my eyes were deceiving me because the price was exactly the same. But, I also noticed that it occupied less space on the freezer door. It was noticeably smaller and, sure enough, it was no longer a half gallon. To me this is a very deceptive practice on the part of the manufacturer. When the price of a product goes up, you can’t help but notice and you can decide it’s no longer worth buying. But, when they shrink the package and give you less for the same money, they are trying to make fools of us!

Breyer’s isn’t alone in using this unethical strategy either. EDY’s ice cream is now 1.5 quarts instead of 1.75. I started noticing the cereal boxes were shrinking too. Kelloggs has been shrinking their boxes by 2.4 ounces, check out the Apple Jacks, Fruit Loops, and Cocoa Krispies! General Mills’ Cheerios are down I.5 ounces. Hellman’s mayo is also 2 ounces lighter, down to 30 ounces from 32. Doritos has shrunk their packages from 12 ounces to 10 ounces. Tropicana has reduced its 96 ounce container of orange juice to 89 ounces. Bounty paper towels are also down from 60 to 52 towels per roll. Charmin toilet paper created Charmin Ultra Strong that now comes with fewer sheets per roll. Yes, even a bar of Dial soap has lost weight, it went from 4.5 ounces to 4 ounces. Who knows what else has shrunk? Remember when the hamburger bun used to be too big for your burger? Last week I made hamburgers and the buns were smaller than the burgers!

These companies may blame product shrinkage on rising costs, but they failed to inform the consumer. Instead, the boxes look exactly the same and the prices are exactly the same and they know that, after purchasing these items year in and year out, we are not going to look at the weight. After all, we are too busy checking expiration dates, price, nutritional value, calories, etc to worry about shrinkage. I’m sure more and more companies will follow suit and why not, if these companies are getting away with it so will they.

So what’s next? Somehow, I can see us all going to buy a dozen eggs one day soon, only to find it’s now a box of ten.

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