CHOICE membership

Shrinking pack sizes and supermarket pricing oddities



These companies are allowed to get away with so many things now adays I just cannot believe how can keep making things smaller and we are paying more for them. Just like toblerone .Maybe stop buying there products thats what i think boycott them all.And like everything we buy its hardly ever australian owned anymore they are foreign owned. Yes i think dont buy the product anymore buy products at a local baker or choose who really want to buy things from.


When you talk about sizes being made smaller cadbury was a classic many years ago and people complained just like with other products how they made the molds or casting to make the block of chocolate. I remember the height of the bar was not as high as prior bars. I can still remember when cadbury bars were more sharper at the edges but now there bars have a smooth edge. But because of all the outrage they made them a bit larger but still they charged more which get back to the same issue being charged more for less.


I have a real thing for Arnott’s Shape Biscuits Cheddar flavour . They now come in a 175 Gram pack . I found an empty box of shapes while moving house . A few years ago there were 225 Grams net weight per box . Naturally the price never goes down with the weight decrease . Quite the contrary . I like it when the manufactures say " We reduced the quantity of product within the box to do our bit for the obesity epidemic " I think it would be more safe to say " We did it to stop a demanding share holder epidemic by making more profit per item and increase the share holders return .":smirk_cat:


Catering for a Social Breakfast, a friend bought what he thought was enough eggs for everyone, only to discover his “dozen” was actually only 10 eggs per carton. This is the first time I have seen this. Any one else noticed a shrinking dozen?


I had noticed 10-packs but not paid much attention. Looking at your carton of cage eggs it shows 700g of “massive” eggs, or 70g per average egg . A typical 12 egg pack would be 58.33g per average egg. The other common weight, the 600g pack, is only 50g per average egg.

My conclusion is eggs seem to be sold primarily by weight not quantity although we are historically accustomed to the six or dozen containers. This makes the discussion on unit pricing interesting as which is the more important unit for a carton of eggs? Price per egg or price per 100g, or adding a foldout unit pricing leaflet to include everything imaginable? :wink:


I’d be the first to admit that I love big eggs and if I saw that pack I might assume I was getting a dozen - until I checked them for breaks/etc as I always do (where I live it seems they launch the eggs from the nearest capital city from a trebuchet - they are eggs after all, bird eggs, so surely they can fly?). At times its the 4th or 5th box before I find all eggs intact. That said, the number 10 is fairly prominent, if only on the front. It’s the size of the box being so close to a normal dozen that goes against how we are conditioned to see retail packaging of eggs. They also come in 6 and 18 and beyond, but they don’t ‘look’ like a dozen …


I wonder if the 10 pack for ‘massive’ eggs is more about package size rather than meeting a dozen, the traditional egg carton size.

With transportation and shelving, an extra large egg carton may cause roll on issues such as not maximising number in standardised boxes/shelves.

Or maybe it was introduced to simplify unit pricing. Dividing by 10 is easier than 12 for most of us…or maybe the start of the metrification/metrication of egg industry?


In this case, he was despatched to purchase one egg per person and ended up 17% short. This carton was the same size as the dozen and does not have “10” on the top, so he thought he was getting cartons of 12. You do make a valid point regarding Unit Pricing:- per egg or per kg/100g? Catering for a crowd, each getting one or two eggs - Per Egg. Recipes are usually in “per egg”, however I could reduce the number of eggs if I needed a lot and they were larger, but I tend to think cooks stick to the number proscribed. The “per kg” would allow a comparison between egg sizes - more yolk for money? Interestingly the 1970’s cook’s bible “The Australian Women’s Weekly Cookbook” ed Ellen Sinclair stipulates the eggs as “standard-sized 60 to 75g / 2oz to 2.5oz egg”. Eggs are getting smaller? Or the “standard” is lowering.

As an aside, he was chipped about getting Cage Eggs, however he pointed out all the ticks and that they were “happy hens” That’s what he saw, not the side panel, due, he said, to the way they were stacked.


certainly a lot happier hens than the ones in the meat section, or the ones in the pre-cooked roast shelves :slight_smile:


There are Jumbo Eggs packaged in 12 to the carton and they weight about 70.5 g each. They fit in a standard carton so my take on the example from @zackarii is some company making a “killing” from consumers as every 5 boxes they sell this way they get another box to sell.


Caveat emptor, let the buyer beware.
This ruse was used years ago by the liquor industry by downsizing bottles from 750mls to 700mls.


This one came via our Facebook page. Both packs reported as being 200gms, but while the “Jumbo” is $5.50, the salted cashews are $3.85…

Seems a little curious?


Yes i agree with you on that about sizes. cadbury chocolate are pretty bad with making there blocks smaller and i remember several years back how customers complained that the blocks were smaller and made them slightly larger. I still remember years back cadbury blocks were higher in height of the block but now they are lower in height and they changed the moulds.toblerone mislead people by making the gaos wider in between each piece of chocolate. As you say many things are smaller than before and charging all of us more.


Actually, Cadbury has a new trick: less chocolate, more ‘other stuff’ in your bars. They have a ridiculous range of flavours now, and I’m betting that the ‘flavour’ has been chosen as much on cost as for any other reason.

I wouldn’t be too sure about that.

I was listening to a podcast today. It’s a repeat of a previous Planet Money episode about class actions, and focuses on a US class action lawsuit that is being brought against McCormick for keeping their pepper pack size but reducing the contents.


Maybe the packet contains larger sized nuts though the packet still weighs the same. If the nuts are larger then perhaps a premium is paid on them. This larger or different sized product pricing also applies to prawns and many other products eg bananas, pineapples, avocadoes.


Looks like this is the case. It seems ‘jumbo’ might colloquially be used for a ‘W 210’ grading in the cashew industry especially at an international level. Personally, I wasn’t aware of the terminology in relation to kernal grading and I think it’s possible some consumers could misunderstand the messaging on this packaging, but perhaps this is common knowledge and I’m just not aware.


How is the consumer supposed to know that it related to the nut size…when it is more likely to be thought is as the packet size.

It is the first time I have heard of jumbo cashews. I don’t think you (we) will not be alone.


I could be the odd person out and yes, I am often considered more than a bit odd, but I have always been aware of nut grading. I grew up where the iconic US brand ‘Planters Peanuts’ started and still remember Mr.Peanut walking around the city centre when I was a child.

The US has formal but voluntary grading guidelines for peanuts as well as pecans and most other nuts. The USDA also has guidelines but their terminology is not as marketing friendly so it is not as commonly seen even in wholesale trade.

I could not find any similar guidelines for Australia but I regularly buy US source Virginia Jumbo peanuts from Costco, that are quite a bit larger than any peanut I have found from an Australian grower.

addenda: This link is the best I was able to google for international and I notice few references to fancy or jumbo reflecting the non-standardisation.



How do they handle the marketing for large kernels in a large pack? Jumbo jumbo nuts? Giant jumbo nuts? 25% more jumbo nuts? Jumbo nuts, big pack? Better stop. I’m sure you can think of lots more.


(is 30 lbs. large enough? :smiley: )