P&G Apologizes, Has An Actual Reason For Old Spice Deodorant Shrinkage

Consumerist reader Jordan recently copied us on an email he wrote to Procter & Gamble, shaming them for performing the grocery shrink ray on his favorite Old Spice deodorant. But before we could even post his tale of outrage, he received a reasonable explanation and an apology from P&G. Imagine that!

Jordan originally relayed his story of product shrinking, writing to the makers of Old Spice about finding out his favorite brand had been redesigned to have less deodorant, but for the same price as before:

We’ve had a long history together, and I’ve loved every minute of it.So you can imagine my excitement when I went to my local grocery outlet to purchase more wonderful Old Spice products, and I saw some cool new packaging. After arriving home, my excitement turned to dismay when I realized that your “New Look” had actually reduced the contents of the deodorant by .25 oz, yet the price had remained the same.

He forwarded the reply he received from P&G, and says he’s happy they responded so fast and clued him in on why the product got smaller but the price stayed constant — pricing is at the mercy of the retailer, so now he blames Target.

While we understand your disappointment, I’d like to explain why the change was made to our Red Zone and Fresh Collection packaging. To address manufacturing efficiencies between our Anti-Perspirant and Deodorants line, we made the decision to use some packaging efficiencies for the products. When complete, our Anti-Perspirant stick is much shorter than our deodorant stick. We decided against keeping the same package (which is common among other products in the category) for both products because our stick would make the package look as if it was half full. We decided to move to a smaller form for each product to maximize efficiency. We reviewed this change with our top customers and from a pricing standpoint, although the pricing decisions are the sole discretion of the retailer, we have seen that retailers have adjusted the price of the products. It seems that the price remained constant at your retailer.

In addition to the explanation, P&G offered Jordan some coupons for their products as part of their apology, and have in turn, kept a loyal customer.

See how that works, everyone else? Reasonable policies + efficient customer service = loyalty. Take notes.


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