The Shrinkflation Tracker, by Sam Lader, is on a mission to stop manufacturers quietly putting less food inside product packaging without a corresponding fall in price to consumers. The practice is out of control, so much so that even major retailers are beginning to warn customers against lest they suspect complicity in the practice.
Among the brands named and shamed by the site are Pringles (7% shrink in the weight of chips in a tube), Dove soap (20% shrink in bar size) and Colgate (25%!). From the packaging and candy brands, the site appears to be for products in Britain and Ireland. Hopefully a U.S. section will be forthcoming.
Shrinkflation, a subtle yet significant phenomenon, refers to the practice of manufacturers reducing the size or quantity of a product while maintaining its price. The platform offers users the opportunity to contribute their observations and engage in discussions related to these changes.
By tracking changes in product sizes and quantities and uniting individuals who are concerned about fair consumer practices, Shrinkflation Index aims to create a space for advocacy and informed consumerism.
One thing that a tracker like this can't see is the diminishing quality of certain brands: cheaper ingredients, watered-down formulas, and so on. Bleach that was 9% sodium hypochlorite now 6.95%, that sort of thing. The Guardian's Hilary Osbourne wrote recently about "Skimpflation," as it's called.
Morrisons Guacamole The ingredients used to include 80% avocado and 5% red onion but now show 77% avocado and an unspecified amount of onion.
Aldi Specially Selected Pesto Rosso 190g This used to contain 33% extra virgin olive oil and 26% rehydrated sun-dried tomatoes; now it is 27% extra virgin olive oil and 23% rehydrated sun-dried tomatoes.
Aldi Bramwells Real Mayonnaise It used to list 9% egg yolk but now lists 6% egg and 1.5% egg yolk.
Bertolli, Morrisons and Sainsbury's olive oil spreads In these spreads, too, 21% olive oil has been reduced to 10%.