My Shrinking Groceries


They think we don’t notice but we do – my groceries are shrinking. There is nothing wrong with manufacturers and retailers making a fair profit but the joke is on us. Every little bit of profit is being eked out at the consumer’s expense.  What am I talking about? My little whinge-fest is about dwindling products, rising prices and how everything you buy in a supermarket is just getting sweeter and sweeter.  Baked beans shouldn’t taste like cotton candy.

Every time I find a product that works it disappears off the shelf probably because it does work and people just don’t need to buy as much – after all supermarkets insist products turnover on the shelves. Glass cleaners once used to clean glass. Now they leave a smoky smear near impossible to remove so you have to use more! “Double toilet rolls” (once a normal roll) have become “long rolls” so we are paying more for less. I’m guessing even the size of each sheet isn’t what it used to be. Bottles and jars come out in new shapes so they hold less. We are told to use a capful but the caps are getting bigger. Every time a ‘new look’ is launched it comes with a new look price. Packaging is bigger, chocolate bars are smaller, and matches are so thin they break when struck. Next time you have a night out, check out the shape of your glass – it may hold less liquid than it once did – and

I could go through every product on the shelves but I won’t. There are serious implications of our shrinking groceries. The less well off who barely make ends meet are getting far less for their money and paying proportionately more tax on them. Affordable products are too often super sweet, nutritionally empty, and refined and reconstituted beyond recognition. Depending on where you live you may not have access to farm-sold, fresh products. Our health (at least the health of those in poverty) is suffering – obesity and diabetes the big culprits amongst a plethora of conditions. Is it legitimate marketing or deceptive?  Next time you are in the supermarket have a good look and you decide.


Written By Patricia Fronek

My shrinking groceries was originally published @ Social Work, Social Work and has been syndicated with permission.

Photo by peddhapati


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