Do supermarkets really think we have come down in the last shower? I have purchased several items from different supermarket stores in the last couple of weeks and a disturbing trend seems to be emerging, that of the Incredible Shrinking Product! Whereas before I could buy a certain item, assured in the size and weight of it, due to its price, now, I have to read the label and make sure I am not being conned out of my money. And this is most annoying. I’ll give you some examples but I am sure you can provide me with many of your own. I am always up for a bargain or two so when I saw my favourite detergent, in Tescos, two for £4 instead of the usual £3 per bottle I wrestled a granny to the floor to get the last couple. The smug feeling tinged with guilt soon evaporated as I got home and placing them next to my old bottle, I realised that I had been ‘had’ readers! The old bottle that retailed for £3 did 28 washes, whereas this paltry cousin only proclaimed to do 18! They looked exactly the same apart from this tiny fact. Furious with myself for being conned, it made me wonder about sausages, as you typically do. Why readers, can you now only buy them in packs of 6 and yet they are still the same price? Do you remember the good old days when you could get sausages in packs of eight? I mean, they fitted better in packs of eight, they served more people in eight packs, and I wouldn’t mind the fact that the size had changed but the price has remained the same. Why?
Now don’t get me started on Tropicana, it’s my favourite orange juice, smooth of course, I don’t need bits, if I want to eat an orange I’ll eat one. And I just love it when I see those signs with the 2 litre bottles stating £2 each, roll back prices (yes now we are in Asda). So whenever I do I grab as many as my little arms will manage to carry back to the tills, because let’s face it, this juice is pricey normally! And I’m set up for one of my five a day. So imagine my horror, when yet again, I had purchased my tetrapacks of said same juice, got them back home, was nestling them into the fridge and I noticed that they were smaller than the old bottle left inside there. Pulling out the old bottle I saw that this was a 2 litre one, but the new bottles are now 1.4 litres. Yet still the same price of £2! Why?
So the next time I was in our local supermarket I did a quick shifty around the place and found that many items had been reduced in size, but not in price. Chocolate bars that were once 110g are now 85g but no less money nor explanation; boxes of cereal that used to be a standard size of 500g are now 450g but yes, you’ve guessed it, still the same price; toilet rolls that weighed a certain amount now weigh less but cost more. They have even changed the size of fizzy drinks bottles, thinking that no one will notice. So what is going on? Clearly it has to be an attempt to con the customer that they believe they are still getting a bargain, by reducing the size of products they are getting more profit but we who are buying the items still think we are getting a great deal. That is until we cotton onto the fact that we are being conned. Why don’t the supermarkets, if they have nothing to hide, put statements on the products saying ‘new size – no change in price’ if they have nothing to be afraid of? If it is not a con they should be happy to do this. So now I look at everything in the expectation that every supermarket is out to get me, whether it is by short-changing me at the tills, by not putting through a special deal, or by this new tactic of reducing size and not the price.
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