Honey I shrunk the shopping… the secret of “Shrinkflation”:
So I am pretty sure we have all had the occasional moan about how our dear friend “freddo” was once 10p and is now pushing 30p, but is it always the case that the products you are buying are getting more expensive? Well, no, its not! As many of us savvy shoppers out there have noticed the package sizes of the products we are buying have also seemingly disintegrated. Now official figures confirm that over 2,500 consumer products have fallen victim to “shrinkflation”.
As many as 2,529 products have shrunk in size but are being sold for the same price, says the Office for National Statistics (ONS).
Everything from consumer goods such as crisps all the way to toilet rolls have become smaller, the change is often put down to the costs of ingredients and manufacturing.
Andrex, whose toilet paper rolls have shrunk from 280 to 221 sheets, justified the change by saying the quality had improved, which becomes more laughable each time I read it.
“Reducing the roll by a number of sheets has helped us make this multi-million pound investment in product performance possible,” a spokesperson said.
“Consumer pricing is solely in the domain of the retailer.”
Chocolate and confectionary is also a hard-hit category, with packets of Maltesers shrinking from 121g to 103g, and Toblerone changing its shape to create an overall shrinkage of 12%.
Toblerone’s manufacturers, Mondelez, said larger spaces between the product’s iconic triangles was “to keep the products affordable”, after experiencing higher costs for numerous ingredients.
Retailers often struggle to avoid off-putting price hikes, but new package sizes have faced criticism.
Mark Jones, a food and drink solicitor at law firm Gordons, said, “Suppliers and retailers do not want to raise the ‘on the shelf’ price, but both have had to adapt to increasing commodity prices.
“Shrinking the size of the products being sold, whether that is toilet paper, chocolate or cleaning products, is just another way of pushing through a price increase, but in a more subtle way.”
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