Yet another common product has been hit with the shrinking ray—this time it’s Brawny paper towels, which Jason noticed recently received a new package design, apparently to disguise that there are now fewer sheets and a higher price.
Today at the store I picked up some Brawny paper towels. Specifically, the 8 roll pick-a-size ones. I try to use paper towels only for really messy stuff like coffee grounds and stuff. These are nice since the area of each towel is smaller than most other ones, so I don’t have to use a big towel for a small spill. Anyway, I noticed they changed the package design, as well as that the price increased from $5.98, which is what it’s been for the 6+ months I’ve been buying this brand, to $6.36.
After I got home I compared the dimensions listed on the package to those listed on the previous package of Brawny 8 roll pick a size paper towels that I purchased. On the previous package of Brawny paper towels that I purchased it says that each roll has 110 2-ply paper towels and a total area of 403.3 square feet. On the new package of Brawny paper towels it says that each roll has 88 2-ply paper towels and a total area of 322.6 square feet. So the price went up 6%, while the number and area of the paper towels on each roll decreased by 20%.
On the package of the new Brawny paper towels it claims that they’re now softer & thicker. I don’t know who cares about the softness of paper towels, and if anything the new ones seem less soft. They do seem slightly thicker, though, although the difference is minimal.
This is one of those small-but-offensive ways companies screw over their customers, by sneaking in price increases disguised as reformulated products or packaging. We know why they do it—so nobody can accuse them of suddenly hiking the price by 25%—but we wish new package designs had to clearly display price/size differences between the new product and the previous for, say, a six month period.
“General Mill Will Decrease The Size Of Cereal Boxes, Raise Prices”
“Dial Full Force Soap Bars Now 10% Smaller”
“New Taller Honey Nut Cheerios Box Is 15 Oz Lighter”
“Cadbury: Our Eggs Aren’t Smaller, You Are Bigger”
“Charmin Rolls Out Shorter Ultra Big Rolls”