Shrinkflation, AKA the Grocery Shrink Ray is a way some companies are reducing their costs by “stealth”. The package looks the same, but the quantity or size is reduced, and you are still paying the same amount…blissfully unaware.
Imagine opening a bag of your favourite chips, only to find that the contents seem mysteriously diminished. Or perhaps you've noticed that your toothpaste doesn't quite fit with the box.
“Honey, They Shrunk the Toothpaste Too”
The above examples from Bored Panda
(You can see about 48 more examples at the link above)
Some “trusted” brands are taking advantage of their most loyal customers, knowing they won’t scrutinize the label, packaging or compare unit costs. This isn't an entirely new phenomenon, but rising production costs, increased raw material and labour costs are squeezing corporate margins, so “Shrinkflation”, the a sneaky short-cut to maintain profits and customers is more prevalent than ever.
We must be aware that packaging is the marketers billboard calling out for our attention as we walk our carts down the grocery store aisle. If we are sleepwalking, and making decisions on autopilot we may pay the price in 3 ways.
1) Our Finances (ie: Shrinkflation)
2) Our Health (ie: sugar, and it's 61 different names)
3) Our Environment (ie: unnecessary clamshell packaging)
Should government help us with more regulation? Well that's another question up for debate.
In the meantime, the best we can do is stay curious, aware, and conscious of what's going on.
Thank you for considering etee to support you in your quest for a more mindful and sustainable lifestyle.