A frustrated Aussie who complained about the "tiny" chips in his container of Pringles has reignited "shrinkflation" claims that have plagued the brand for years, but the company maintains there's a good reason for the change.
The popular snack, which is sold in major supermarkets like Coles and Woolworths across Australia, is one of the many products eagle-eyed consumers are claiming to be part of the growing trend of items shrinking in size while being sold for the same or higher price.
In a Reddit post, the dissatisfied customer shared photos of the contents of a 53g can of Sour Cream & Onion Pringles, including one of himself holding up a chip from the container. "I didn't believe it till now, these Pringles are tiny," he commented.
Pringles currently come in 134g containers and the smaller 53g cans, which are sold for about $5 and $2.50 when not on special. Previously, a regular-sized tube of Pringles contained 150g of the famous stacked crisps, which contain around 40 per cent potato while the rest is made from wheat and vegetable flours.
Pringles on 'shrinkflation' claims
According to Pringles, the brand's chips and cans were made smaller back in 2016 to fit in with a new manufacturing facility that has different equipment to the original US factory, which caused controversy at the time. "Five years ago we decided to move the Asia-Pacific region's production to our new, state-of-the-art manufacturing plant in Malaysia," a spokesperson for the company told Yahoo News Australia.
"As our Malaysia plant was already servicing our Asian market, we decided we would standardise production and roll out the same Pringles recipe, chip size and packaging from this location for Australia and New Zealand."
One thing that's not shrinking
A big problem that customers noticed with this change, however, is that prices didn't drop accordingly. Pringles claimed higher production costs associated with the new cans forced a price increase to help cover some of these overheads.
"What's great about the new plant is that we'll have more flexibility with launching new products and flavours that are tailored to our tastes, which over the last five years has been loved by our consumers," the spokesperson added, but didn't say if further shrinkage had occurred to Pringles during this time.
Regardless of the reason, shrinking product sizes and rising costs are increasingly becoming a concern for cash-strapped Aussies trying to stretch their household budgets. Photos and videos of shrunken staples from dishwashing pods to popular cereal brands have been widely shared online, with many consumers accusing big brands of going too far in the name of profit.
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