That Shrinking Feeling

“It was two for $5” and he proudly handed me the small bags, each filled with 8 oz of shredded cheddar cheese. “Did they come with a magnifier?” I joked because lately, I don’t know what else to do. What sounded like a good deal, wasn’t a good deal at all. Instead of the old 16 oz packages, we have now two miniature cheese packets in our fridge. The price stayed the same, just the quantity was reduced by 50%.

A lot of consumers have complained -and rightfully so- that they lately, have problems with the shrinkflation.

“Shrinkflation” what a word! That’s what it’s called when the packages and quantities get smaller. An old gimmick used to make us believe we still get the same amount of product. A proportion trick, consumers too often fall for -or simply get used to. How long will it take me to accept the 8 oz packages as the new normal?

Perhaps governments around the world should send out free magnifiers for everyone? The magnifiers would come in handy on our daily grocery expeditions. It would make portions look bigger and the prices would be blurry.

Keeping calm and entertained while dealing with the ongoing price-gauging all over the world, has become a main priority. We can’t panic -not yet!

Old game shows should get a much-needed update. “The Price is Right” a daily television jump-and-scream event should be renamed to “Guess the Inflation Right”. Is it 10, 30, or perhaps 50%? Have the prices doubled, tripled, or even more? Has the product amount shrunk by half to confuse us even more? Calling all mathematics geniuses to figure that one out. Product amount shrunk by 9%, price raised by 30%. What’s the real number?

The ones who will get it right will get bonus points and -a free calculator to make sure they won’t be living above their means, which they only do, because the means have not been moved for most of us.

The prizes should be different as well. Behind the first door, the main prize, a paid trip to the gas station for six months. Fill up to the rim and enjoy! Behind Door #2 will be an all paid-trip to a local grocery store of your choice. Fill up your own car with groceries as much as you can. Dashboard, Floorboards, luggage railing, all allowed and fair game. Pack that baby full!

Door #3 might not seem like much, but could be a real lifesaver. A grocery cart with an integrated calculator and an oxygen tank, in case you feel like fainting while watching the prices climb right in front of your eyes.

Chicken is now the new steak! Steaks are now luxury items! Long live the pork!

Brats and sausages have become this year’s summer hit. Ugly vegetables are in demand, we want to buy what we normally throw away, preferably for the same price we used to pay for perfect produce -once upon a time, before this insanity started worldwide. Give us the misfits, the deformed carrots, and worm-eaten apples, please. Don’t hold back! We are ready!

Expiration dates should be blackened from now on, to make sure consumers will judge the produce and food with their noses and their eyes. The use of common sense will come in handy and -if all fails- give it to the dog or cat (the cat might be best, considering dogs eat rotten cadavers in the wild.)

If your cat doesn’t like it, you might want to part with the 2-week old deli meat.

New laws should be put in place to make sure that the delivery costs for food cannot be higher than the purchase of the food items itself, and all hidden fees should be named accurately. Doordash, Uber Eats, and Grubhub, and all the others, they should no longer be allowed to call it SERVICE FEE, instead, it should be named the right way. GREED-FEE-WITH-NO-PURPOSE-AT-ALL.

The new magnifiers would make us happier. Produce, packages, and our wallets would seem bigger and if would keep using them while eating, it would seem the portion sizes we now can effort haven’t changed at all.

Life would be good again!

8 thoughts on “That Shrinking Feeling

  1. In light of this, perhaps my “forced downsizing” came at the right time?

    Since I now have much less space and only myself to feed, clothe, dispose of trash for, I am in the process of trying to change my habits. My kids now have the Costco and Sam’s Club memberships but still I have to lose the habit/desire to buy big boxes of things. I’m in a class that provides vouchers to be used at the weekly local farmer’s market so now I am trying to pay more attention to how long I can keep the produce fresh and therefore to use it before it spoils.

    At the same time I know I am extra fortunate to have the financial means to buy whatever I want no matter the cost, almost. I say almost because I still refuse to pay the high prices for many items even though I can afford them.

    Clearly, old habits die hard. That trait can be a double-edged sword and sometimes I have trouble deciding.


  2. “Shrinkflation” is a wonderful word, and it is in evidence almost everywhere. It requires very careful shopping, but with attention, I don’t think we’re feeling too much pressure. I’m glad I’m not trying to feed a large family right now!


  3. The same is happening here, unfortunately. First they shrunk the normal sized packaging. Then, under claims of high costs, those smaller packages got increased in price as well. Making it a much larger price bump them most people see, because many didn’t notice the shrinking at first…
    I understand things being more expensive due to risen energy and transport costs. But when I hear that the petrol and energy companies make millions of profits, I wonder how much of a scam it all is… They increase prices while having loads of profits while we need a magnifier to see the food on our plates.
    I hope they will find a way to battle this inflation or else many people will be struggling hard. 😔


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