SHRINKFLATION! getting less, but paying the same...


We wonder if it's an optical illusion, but if you've been thinking that your favourite bar of chocolate is getting smaller, and yet the price tag is still the same, then you are right.

In economics, 'shrinkflation' is the process of a product shrinking in size or quantity, or even sometimes reformulating or reducing the quality of the item but the prices remain the same or heaven forbid, even increase.

It's been going on for years and it happens all over the world.

  • In 2009 Mars reduced the size of their Mars bar from 62.5 grams to 58 grams, while the price remained at 37 pence.[6]

  • In 2010 Kraft reduced its 200g Toblerone bar to 170g.

  • Tetley tea bags were sold in boxes of 88 instead of 100.

  • Nestlé reduced its After Eight Mint Chocolate Thins box from 200g to 170g.

  • Cadbury's Crunchie were sold in packs of three instead of four.

  • In 2013 Cereal Partners sold Shredded Wheat Superfruity for £2.68 at Sainsbury's; was put on £2 special offer, before returning to £2.68, but with less cereal in each box.

  • In January 2009 Häagen-Dazs announced that it would be reducing the size of their ice cream cartons in the US from 16 US fl oz (470 ml) to 14 US fl oz (410 ml).

  • In March 2014 Coca-Cola reduced the size of their 2 litre bottle to 1.75 litres

  • Birds Eye potato waffles were reduced from a 12 pack to a 10 pack

  • PG Tips 80 teabags reduced in weight from 250g to 232g, while the price remained at £1.99

  • Kit Kat Chunky was reduced in weight from 48g to 40g, while the price remained at £0.60

In the UK, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) studied the price of 17,000 items between September 2015 and June 2017. It found 206 products in all categories had shrunk in size, while 79 increased. And it was bread and cereals that were most affected.

Mike Hardie, head of inflation at the Office for National Statistics, said: "Over the last few years, consumers may have noticed that some companies have reduced the size of their products while the price remained the same, which is often attributed to operational and material cost rises."