October, 2006 I recorded my reaction upon opening a package of Andes mints that I had purchased…
It is ridiculous to visually manipulate your customers’ expectations in this manner. Because some of them are going to get home and discover that you’ve ripped them off, and they’re going to be very unhappy.
Some product manufacturers even claim “settling may have occurred in shipping…” to cover them against the obvious fact that they are selling you a box of cereal that is 1/5 empty air. Which means their marketing people probably consulted their legal people “how can we get away with this?” Or how about those packs of chicken that you can buy, which contain at least 2 shot glasses worth of water – let’s say 3oz, almost 1/5 of a pound. Why don’t they just scream in our faces “We FOOLED YOU!!!”
I have not purchased any Andes Mints since 2006.
First world problems, I know…
I had managed to forget this incident until I was cruelly reminded of it by oualawouzou in a comment over in another thread.
chigau (違う) says
Always buy from the Bulk section of the supermarket.
You can sift out the bugs once you get home.
Easter eggs are even more dishonest, you are expected to buy 98% volume by air and love it. My favourite chocolate is Lindt Mint Intense, The blocks come in simple cardboard packaging that contains mainly top quality chocolate and a very thin foil wrapper. And for some odd reason our local supermarkets have it on a 1/2 price special every month or so where I buy 10 blocks to last me until the next special. I go cold turkey before ever buying it at full price.
I can understand (and forgive) some of the artificial size manipulation. For example, a company that makes cereal would want all ‘small’ or all ‘large’ cereal boxes the same size, for a uniform look in the grocery aisle. And some settling does occur with cereal and chips. (Key word there being ‘some’).
But most of this is what Consumerist calls the Grocery Shrink Ray. By reducing the amount of product without reducing the size of packaging, average consumers don’t realize they’re actually getting less. Technically, having too much slack in packaging is illegal, but good luck getting the government to take an interest in it.
Crip Dyke, Right Reverend Feminist FuckToy of Death & Her Handmaiden says
This article was not at all about any of the things I thought it might be about before I clicked.
Build a tent and say the world as dry
Zoom the camera out and see the lie
Also, they’re usually made from really, really bad “chocolate”. (Scare quotes because anything with less than 70% cocoa solids isn’t really chocolate in my book.)
Another trick I’ve noticed is that they’ll slowly reduce the package size (but not the price) over time until it’s, say, 20% less than it was originally, and then make a big fuss about giving you 20% “extra” “free” when they go back to the original size.
Marcus Ranum says
Dunc@#6: I noticed the other day that 5# sugar bags are 4# now, but still the same price.