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March 9, 2020

Here We Downsize Again – Winter 2020

Filed under: Downsizing,Food/Groceries,Retail — Edgar (aka MrConsumer) @ 5:59 am

We start the new decade with an old trick — inconspicuously reducing the package size of products as a sneaky way to raise prices. You pay the same price but get less for your money. Here are our latest discoveries. (If you find a product that has been downsized, please take a clear picture of both the old and new size packages and submit it here. )



The folks at P&G are doing it again on supermarket shelves right now. Newly designed packages of Charmin toilet tissue are sitting next to the current version.



The difference is that each “mega” roll now has 20 fewer sheets. And just a reminder… the Charmin of 50 years ago in the Mr. Whipple days had 600-650 single-ply sheets per roll. Thanks to our ace downsizing detective Richard Ginn for spotting this change.



Another item right in the midst of being downsized now is Powerade. The Coca-Cola Company is reducing the size of its 32-ounce bottles of this sports drink to just 28 ounces. Thanks to consumer reporter John Matarese of WCPO-TV for this tip.





Paper products continue to be downsized regularly. The makers of Puffs tissues reduced the size of its cube-shaped boxes from 56 tissues to 48.



Thanks to Liz B. for pointing out how this product changed.


Hershey’s Kisses

One of the nasty tricks that some product makers do sometimes when downsizing an item is to make the package size bigger than the old one, but now contain less. In this case, a number of Hershey’s chocolate products sold in large bags lost two ounces last fall. Here, even though it is still called “family size,” these bags of Hershey’s kisses went down from 18 ounces to 16. 1. And their 12-ounce “classic size” bags went from 12 ounces to just 10. But that size got renamed “share size.”


Hershey's Kisses


Angel Soft Toilet Tissue

Finally, the downsizing angels pulled a double-whammy on your fanny.


Angel Soft

Not only did they trim 30 sheets off of each roll of their toilet paper, Angel Soft made each sheet more narrow. The four-inch square tissues are now only 3.8-inches wide. Thanks to Richard Ginn for finding this change last fall.

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  1. I’ve never understood the mega-roll math that appears on all these paper products. It’s obviously a fiction so I kind of just ignored it. But if one actually crunches the numbers, it seems as though Charmin are suggesting that a “regular roll” of toilet paper has… 66 sheets?

    Comment by wazroth — March 9, 2020 @ 6:43 am
  2. Pretty soon toilet tissue rolls will be narrow enough to put on a toothpick & have it stick out both ends!
    What surprises me is that manufacturers of the toilet roll holders haven’t down-sized the holders to match the shorter rolls. Used to be a somewhat snug fit—now there’s 1-1/2” of empty spindle showing!

    Comment by Sunny — March 9, 2020 @ 8:08 am
  3. The word ‘fanny’ has a very different meaning this side of the pond!

    Comment by Britguy — March 9, 2020 @ 8:15 am
  4. I wonder on the Charmin if they got rid of the double sized rolls??

    66 sheets per single roll wazroth is more than enough for your bum.

    Comment by richard Ginn — March 9, 2020 @ 11:35 am
  5. Seems like most household paper products that come on a roll have been similarly downsized. Unfortunately, their prices remain the same as before, or are higher.

    Comment by Artfox — March 9, 2020 @ 4:29 pm
  6. When I saw the downsized Charmin product only the blue rolls got a size cut. Not the red rolls yet although you know at some point of time they will be next.

    Comment by richard Ginn — March 9, 2020 @ 4:34 pm
  7. A somewhat odd comment but true….if Puffs has downsized it’s tissue amount in their cube, why does the cube no longer fit in my tissue cover cube. (?)
    I have to manipulate the box to finally get it to fit.
    Downsize the tissues. Enlarged it’s box.

    Comment by Gaye Christianson — March 9, 2020 @ 7:07 pm
  8. Yes, many of us are noticing the downsizing in products which we purchase.

    However, do the companies who manufacture these products really care?

    They know full well that these are necessities for daily living and consumers don’t really have a choice in the matter.

    Our complaints don’t change their soaring profits.

    Comment by Margo Maseman — March 9, 2020 @ 9:56 pm
  9. I don’t know who they think they’re fooling. We know we’re paying more when we have to go back to the store to stock up more often. Sometimes the house brand at the supermarket is cheaper, plus not only is the product of better quality, you get more in the box or on the roll. Tissues are larger and don’t disintegrate so easily, etc. It pays to comparison shop.

    Comment by Renée — March 16, 2020 @ 11:44 pm

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