Toilet paper isn’t the only thing that’s shrinking


Have you noticed? Items in every aisle of your favorite store have been shrinking, but the price doesn’t go down as well – it stays the same.

This trend has bothered Clark for years, starting with smaller rolls of toilet paper.

Read more: High quality toilet paper comes cheap

Your favorite products are getting smaller 

Consumer Reports, which has tested bathroom tissue several times since 2009, says some brands have shrunk toilet paper rolls by as much as 23%!

Think about it: Does the roll fit on the holder the same way that it used to? Probably not.

While shrinking toilet paper isn’t exactly new, we recently told you that Watkins Inc., a small spice maker, sued McCormick & Co. over its ground pepper containers.

The lawsuit claims McCormick reduced the amount of pepper but not the size of its tins.

Your toilet paper isn't the only thing that's shrinking

While this case is far from over, McCormick says that it didn’t deceive customers because the correct product weight was always listed on the front label.

Clark says you have to look at the product weight — not just price — to identify a true deal. 


“I buy three bars of soap for $1 at Dollar Tree, but when you look at the product weight, it’s like you’re getting two regular-sized bars for a dollar,” Clark said.

So what else is shrinking? Reacting to our story about the pepper tins, hundreds of our Facebook fans added to the list: 

Eleanor Worley: The same thing is happening with crackers, chips, cookies, coffee. Marketing has become the art of deception.

Mike Harrison: This has been going on for years. Add breakfast cereal to this list.

Kim Stepp: Look at the jars of peanut butter, apple sauce, and mayonnaise for example. They look the same on the outside, but when you look at the bottom, the jar has been molded to go up higher to hold less.

Terry Kern-Stone: All the companies are doing it. They concave the bottom of bottles or make the the bottle just slightly narrow enough to save ounces. Barely noticeable and who checks the grams or ounces when it looks the same. Raise the cost and you get less product.

JoAnn Collins Pintz: Coffee been doing it for years. No more pound of coffee can vary from 10 oz to 13 oz.

Forrest Aldrich: I see this practice applied in other products, too. Especially over the counter medications and vitamins.

Manufacturers don’t want to increase prices, so they’re reducing the product size to offset their rising costs.

What can you do about it? In addition to paying attention to a product’s weight, Clark says you can look for unit pricing labels to help you compare items.

If you have anything to add to our list, tell us about it on Facebook and Twitter.

Read more: Can you tell the difference between these tins? Here’s what you should know

Clark’s key tips for avoiding long supermarket lines


Clark Deals
  • Show Comments Hide Comments