Grocery Shrink Ray Hits Garden Salsa Sun Chips

These Sun Chips have shrunk from 11.5 oz to 10.5 oz and are still being sold at the same price. “Not even healthy foods that normally are already sold in smaller portions are safe,” says tipster MasonTwo who spotted these on the shelves at Walmart. CNN says the products most vulnerable to the Grocery Shrink Ray are paper towels, potato chips, sticks of gum, toilet paper, detergent and candy bars. Hey, look at the bright side, maybe the Grocery Shrink Ray is just what we need to fight the obesity crisis.


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  1. induscreed says:

    considering that everything else is getting more expensive, why is this news? its not like they’ve advertized it at 11.5 oz and charging the same.

    I guess a slight reduction in quantity at the same price has less psychological hurt than offering the same quantity at a 10% higher price.

    This will only get worse.

  2. ConsumptionJunkie says:

    Grocer shrink may not be all that bad. I’ve noticed that imported foods, like cheese from Italy, have got hit hard by the grocery shrink ray. As consumers by more American products, production in the U.S. will increase, and so will American jobs.

  3. Smitherd says:

    Grocery Shrink Ray = obesity weapon? That’s amazing!

    It could work…!

  4. ffmariners says:

    I do not think this is an important issue, but to each his own. People tend to think one bag of chips is like a personal snack bag, whether it be over one or two sittings or whatever. So… this could be good portion control.

  5. sean77 says:

    Typo = conspiracy!

  6. Charybdis says:

    I saw my first commercial talking about this just yesterday. Thank God for Blue Bell ice cream.


  7. tcp100 says:

    For those of you that for some reason think Sun Chips are “healthier” than say, Doritos, please take a look at the back of the package for a second.

    There is very little to put Sun Chips in the “healthy food” category.

    …You mean even Ben can succumb to the ploys of marketing? Say it ain’t so, Ben!

  8. strangeffect says:



  9. That-Dude says:

    @tcp100: Thank you.

  10. sean77 says:

    Wait a minute. As far as I can tell, Garden Salsa Sun Chips are an orange bag, and only available in 11.5 oz.

    That is a red bag, that looks like Harvest Cheddar, and those only come in 10.5 oz.

  11. DeadlySinz says:

    shouldn’t the price lower when the quantity lowers

  12. tcp100 says:

    @DeadlySinz: How’s the weather in Obviousland?

  13. Raise prices, shrink package size, reduce employee salaries (outsourcing), decrease vendor discounts, limit distribution etc.

    None of the options are good.

  14. Centurion Wind says:

    @sean77: I purchased a bag of Garden Salsa Sun Chips earlier today. I just checked, and I can confirm that it is indeed Garden Salsa, and is indeed 10.5 oz.

  15. packetsniffer says:

    First off, Ben didn’t say that. He quoted a tipster. Second, they are about 33% less fat than regular potato chips, and they also have a large amount of fiber. They’re healthier than normal chips, plain and simple.

  16. packetsniffer says:

    Ever heard of inflation?

  17. Nicholas_schaulsohn says:

    Sun Chips are healthier because they are made with whole grains, not necessarily because of what the back of the bag says.

  18. Ein2015 says:

    @sean77: You eat too many Sun Chips.

  19. sgodun says:

    Consumerist, when are you going to answer my question about your shrink ray fetish?

    What’s worse — for a company to increase the price of a fixed quantity, or for a company to maintain the price and reduce the quantity?

    Or is this just gonna be another one of those irrational “companies are evil” jihads that Consumerist seems to be so fond of lately?

  20. ruffedges says:

    Once again – This has been happening for years. Old News!

  21. @Nicholas_schaulsohn: And according to a commercial I just saw, they are made w/solar energy now.

  22. xrmb says:

    is there a website that tracks all these shrinking packages? I’m pretty sure we read only about the “tip of the icecream” here.

  23. bcsus83 says:

    “not even healthy foods…”

    Because we all know how healthy sun chips are. ;) LMAO!!!

  24. KassiaIdomeneus says:

    I was comparing bags at the store and sun chips have a slightly more
    calories than a bag of doritos. It does have a few things going for it
    though like whole wheat and fiber and some vitamins that doritos dont
    have so all in all they ARE a better choice for chips. Not health food,
    but HEALTHIER food.

  25. Saydur says:

    Note how Wal-Mart of all places does the favor of providing a cost-per-ounce assessment?

    For all of the downsides, they do a few things right. Any consumer who cares enough can look at that price and recognize the real price of different package sizes.

  26. fleshtone says:

    oh, i get it. these shrink ray posts are about stores not updating their pricing for new (smaller) products? …and not criticizing producers for going smaller? or are they about both? or do they alternate?

  27. fredmertz says:

    We are in the middle of an unprecedented surge in commodity prices, including just about everything you buy in a grocery store. Unless we expect food companies to start losing gobs of money, they can either raise unit prices or lower unit sizes.

  28. Angryrider says:

    “Healthy?” I love SunChips and all but I would hardly call them healthy. Everything either goes up in price or goes down in size. Pocky now costs $1 rather than $.70. I’m sad…

  29. zerj says:

    They didn’t change the price sticker on the shelf so there is a bit of false advertizing as well. They really cost 23.8 cents per ounce.

  30. mike says:

    I guess a slight reduction in quantity at the same price has less psychological hurt than offering the same quantity at a 10% higher price.

    This is exactly the problem though. They are not informing the consumer that they are reducing the quantity of the product. It’s done very slyly, hoping that no one notices. It would be like a gas station charging the same price per 4/5 of a gallon and only showing it in really small font.

    BTW, not sure how accurate this picture is since the label still reads the price for a 11.5 bag ‘o chips.

  31. plim says:

    can’t a consumer claim false advertising/pricing label? the pricing label says that it’s for an 11.5oz package. clearly, they’re buying a smaller package, so they can’t apply the same price as the label.

    until they fix the label =P

  32. You-Me-Us says:

    Got a deep frying pan or Dutch oven? Invest in a mandolin-style slicer, buy some peanut oil and a couple of potatoes. You can make $5 worth of chips from one potato. And they’ll be better.

  33. ZekeSulastin says:

    @You-Me-Us: 31 comments to make it to the inevitable “Make it yourself, don’t buy anything but raw supplies from a store” post. I’m impressed; it’s usually in the first 10.

  34. dragonfire1481 says:

    I don’t mind grocery shrink, but LOWER THE PRICE! It’s not fair to charge the same price for less product.

  35. adamondi says:

    This is par for the course for Frito-Lay. They “introduce new bag sizes” every quarter. That is their euphemism for shrinking packages. Not every product gets shrunk every quarter, but they all do eventually. Frito has been doing this for years. People are just now starting to notice it.

  36. synergy says:

    I don’t really mind any of those things shrinking except the toilet paper. Yikes!