Interesting writeup in the New York Times this week about the shrinking package sizes of processed foods. Turns out that the recession, along with rising costs of commodities, have brought about a sneaky habit by many manufacturers. Instead of raising the price of products, brands are selling less of the product per package:
A can of Chicken of the Sea albacore tuna is now packed at 5 ounces, instead of the 6-ounce version still on some shelves, and in some cases, the 5-ounce can costs more than the larger one. Bags of Doritos, Tostitos and Fritos now hold 20 percent fewer chips than in 2009… read more…
When asked about this, most companies turn on their spin machine and describe new eco-friendly packaging. Or some other excuse.
So, isn’t this great news for dieters struggling with portion control issues? After all, less food means less calories…
Of course not. It’s just another example that goes to show you how easily we are manipulated by clever packages and marketing tactics. Buyer beware.
What to do at the supermarket:
Prices are going up, and it’s getting more expensive. But if you lay out a strategy for buying real, unprocessed foods, you can actually reduce your weekly food budget. Start with the beverage aisle. Simply ignore it. Boom – $500 savings annually for a family of 4. Buy produce in season, or buy it frozen. Here are our top ten tips for nutritious shopping in a recession.