Frugal Frustrations: Shrinking Products

First it was coffee. We started to notice cans of coffee no longer contained a pound of coffee. This was not really noticeable for us because we buy our coffee in bulk at the warehouse club. Then it was ice cream. No longer were containers half gallon, but 1.75 quarts. We lost 12.5% of the product overnight. It was a pretty bold move cutting the size of the product so much.

Now, another shrinking product, this time a 20% cut in the size of the product. 20%?!?!?! shrinking products

I had heard a lot about this one but this week was the first time it hit my grocery purchases. We don’t use much sugar in our house. I had been buying it at the warehouse club but with the small amount of sugar we use, I decided to pick it up at Wal-Mart instead. Our previous 5 pound bags of sugar, have been reduced to 4 pounds.

For as long as I can remember, this staple in the kitchen has been 5 pounds. You would buy 5 pounds of flour and 5 pounds of sugar (good God, is flour next?).

I understand that huge increases in cost have motivated this move, but I think it is silly. With other products, people might not so easily notice but losing a pound of sugar in your bag. I would imagine that this is noticeable.

Why can’t food producers just be honest with us? Rather than raising prices, they decrease the size of the product and hope we don’t notice. With the price of everything going up today, most people are frustrated but understand. I would rather pay higher prices and get the same amount of product than come home and realize I’ve been cheated out of 20% of the product!

Have you noticed the shrinking products on the grocery shelves? Which ones have frustrated you the most?


Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • I’ve seen that…especially frozen veggies etc. that have gone from 16 oz to 14 or 15 oz. Or cans – from 8 oz to 7 or 6 oz. But what I have also noticed is that now prices are going up and sizes are staying the same. Grocery shopping has become even more expensive!

    • My grocery budget is killing me! Meat and dairy prices are just insane. Been introducing a lot more beans into our diet and cutting the amount of meat. My carnivore husband is adjusting surprisingly well!

      • Hello Flecks

        Beans, Beans, the musical fruit. The more you eat…..nah, I’ll stop there 🙂

        In all seriousness, We have been making this new dish with black beans, lentils, and a little shredded chicken topped with some honey and it’s fabulous. We like to think of meat (even chicken) as like a treat, not something that always hits the plate. If you can make it through the week with just one vegetarian meal, it becomes much easier to do more and more of it.

        • In our house that’s tough because my husband is a meat and potatoes man. I’ve found a lot of ways to use mushrooms and beans to cut the amount of meat in our diets. I’m impressed that he’s tried some new foods so we are making some progress.