It’s not an illusion – it’s really happening! As Manager of the grocery sales data at Grocery Guide, I see product shrinkage all the time, but not like
I’ve seen it in the past 2-3 months. I’ve known that as gas prices keep jumping
that the production and transportation costs for our food would also be increasing.
So what will the manufacturers do to compensate for this? Hmmm? Is it going to be easier to get the consumer to pay more because they understand the dynamics of the economy or will it be easier to keep the price the same but make smaller packages? Unfortunately for consumers many products are now coming in smaller packages for the same or greater prices.
Some products that have reduced their sizes are:
Skippy Peanut Butter
Dreyer’s Ice Cream
Edy’s Ice Cream
General Mills Cereals
The store ads are also trying to fool us by clumping products together to disguise the exact size of a product. For example, Aussie Shampoo that used to be 16 oz is now clumped with other hair products that range from 5.1-14 oz. or they don’t put a size at all.
Savvy grocery shoppers are not being fooled but are starting to make changes in their shopping habits.
Here’s some tips from the savvy shopper:
1. Use a coupon anywhere you can. Grocery Guide’s shopping strategy is to use a coupon on the smallest size available of the product. The coupons haven’t down-sized, in fact there’s more of them available, so this strategy is stronger than ever.
2. Switch to store-brand products wherever you can. Our local grocery store-brand yogurt is still 8 oz compared to Yoplait and Dannon 6 oz.
3. Buy at and support your local farmers markets. You can find good buys on produce, herbs, etc. If you go towards the end of market hours, you may find some sellers reducing the prices to clear out. Plan meals around these purchases.
4. Make a shopping list. It is too easy to be distracted by nice displays and kids. Make a shopping list and plan your meals around the sale items. GroceryGuide.com is the perfect place to make a list of products on sale and match recipes to sales.
5. Whenever possible, make your own meals and freeze them. If the trend continues in product shrinkage, and it most likely will, you’ll continue to get less for your money! Take a few hours a week, plan a few daily menus, make a shopping list, prepare the food, and freeze it!
With a little savvy and planning, your grocery bag doesn’t need to feel lighter. That’s good news!