Consumers be warned! Food grows smaller

From yesterday's rabid tabloid campaign to a different campaign, this time by the hater's favourite newspaper, the Daily Mail. Only the really exceptional thing is that the Poorhouse actually supports this one. Having just 2 minutes ago eaten half of a 2-course meal made for four himself, an addiction for moneysaving expertise and an inherent hatred of the larger type of corporation, this was a born winner.

So here it is: "Shoppers 'cheated' as supermarket brands downsize". Yes, it's true, and not just old men moaning about stuff, food has got smaller recently. In size, that is, not price, what with UK food inflation having hit a record 13.7% last month.

Although it's always happened (refer to Mars Bars throughout the ages), it seems some brands are trying to avoid a consumer backlash against their products due to price increases by keeping the price the same, but just giving less food. Here's a few brands the Mail tells tales on:

  • Pampers: the snappily named "Baby Dry Economy Pack Maxi Plus" has lost 4 nappies, but no pound sterling.
  • Dairylea: still have 8 slices in a pack of plasticky cheese, but the slices are thinner. 160g, from 180g.
  • Cadbury: the Family Share Dairy Milk chocolate bar now assumes a smaller family. A family with 20g less appetite for chocolate.
  • Strongbox: a case of cider now contains 3 less cans. Not refreshing.
  • Onken: mousse pots now weigh 115g instead of a slightly more satisfying 150g. Apparently "research revealed customers preferred a smaller serving". Not only is there no earthly way of believing that, unless "Onken Mousse" is as disgusting as it sounds from its name, but I doubt it revealed they wanted to pay the same price for it though.
  • Birds Eye: 107g less peas in a pod (or, more accurately, pack) now.

It's not all new for the credit crunch mind, this classic rip-off scam has happened throughout the ages:

  • Pringles: now new smaller, but no less cheap, Pringles (well, this happened in 2006, it's kind of recent).
  • Ovaltine: smaller jars.
  • Palmolive: smaller bars (of soap).
  • Nestle: the chocolate bar that only a real man can eat, big fat mofo Yorkie, had one of its 7 chunks removed.
  • Rolos: Nestle prevented you from giving your last Rolo to a sweetheart, by not including it in the pack. 11 Rolos became 10.
  • Heinz: in the deep dark past of 1993, even Baked Beans were reduced from 450g to 425g. Is nothing sacred?

Don't let them fool you! Cost per gram (excluding packaging au naturelle) is the only way forward.

Bonus: as it was on the Mail site, the insanity that is the readership of that usually illegally appalling organ of type still stuck in with the commenting. Some actually tried to defend the practice on cost grounds (the Poorhouse's opinion is that a) most businesses are actually not nearly as cash strapped as they pretend, and moreover b) the point here is that they are semi-relying on tricking you. Nowhere does it say in size 72 font "now with added 20% air".)

Others were pure entertainment. Perhaps not as funny as Randy's very similar complaint about his plump wife's dissatisfaction with his shrunken sausage, but along the same lines. Here's a smattering of the Poorhouse faves:

Yes Cadbury's Dairy Milk has reduced the size, and the taste it tastes horrible like coconut

One of the things they've done is to reduce the size of muffins, they're tiny now and hardly worth buying unless you eat two at once

I'm OK, since her Majesties prisons are duty bound to provide sufficient calories a day regardless of the cost. If you are getting desperate throw a brick through a window. In our local nick they have blues sheets for the men and pink sheets for the women - hows that!

Wagon wheels. They were huge, and only 5p. Now they are the size of a rich tea biscuit and cost 25p,

Ryvita is the latest - not only have the crispbreads shrunk in size but they are much harder and tougher to eat and don't taste the same. (OMG, this must be nigh on chemical warfare - Poorhouse)

people in uk are sceary fat, so thats a good thing.


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