Shrinkflation Is Taking Effect With These Popular Brands

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To avoid increasing prices during a period of inflation, some companies are simply shrinking their products — a term known as shrinkflation. The consequence is less ice cream in a bowl or soda in a cup because the packages in which those items are sold have contracted.

It appears that some have noticed this phenomenon once again, as many are reporting on the subject and customers are taking notice, something that companies probably don’t want to happen.

Why It Matters: Several companies have been caught reducing their products sold per container. Walmart WMT Great Value Paper Towels dropped from 168 sheets per roll to 120, Frito-Lay — a subsidiary of PepsiCo, Inc. PEP — shrank Doritos from 9.75 ounces to 9.25, Hershey HSY shrank its 18-ounce pack of dark chocolate Kisses by almost two ounces, and Hefty’s mega pack downsized from 90 to 80 bags, according to The Washington Post.

The consequence: some customers are very unhappy.

“I swear the Drumstick ice creams are doing this,” one person wrote on Reddit. “The little ice cream on top is pathetic!”

What’s Next: Shrinkflation could be a short-term issue, remaining only as long as supply chains continue to backlog due to the ongoing pandemic.

Or, as University of Central Florida college of business dean Paul Jarley said on a university podcast, it could become more of the norm if the U.S. continues to have a more robust labor market and consumers acclimate.

“Consumers will become more acclimated to modest price increases, especially as supply chains work themselves out. And with a more robust job market, people are going to be willing to pay a little more to get what they want.”

Photo: Unsplash photo by Phil Aicken.

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