Not just reduced inflation, beware of these 4 common tricks they use to (covertly) jack up prices

Not just reduced inflation, beware of these 4 common tricks they use to (covertly) jack up prices


Prices go up not only because of inflation. Producers can use a series of “tricks” to increase the price of food (and not only) in a veiled way, the best known but certainly not the only one is the contraction of inflation

There are those who relax buying but, instead, it seems that we should always be especially careful with what we buy, especially if we do not want to fall into the traps of some companies that, with simple tricks, make us pay more. products

To return to this topic more thorny than ever, taking into account the period of energy crisis and raw materials that we are going through, the French consumer magazine 60 million consumers which points out some techniques commonly used by producers to charge more for food and beverages.

So let’s be careful. Even behind a change in packaging, or the launch of an “innovative” product, the following “tricks” can actually be hidden to make us spend more.

inflation contraction

We have talked about it several times, it is a kind of “hidden inflation”, since we pay more for a product that has been reduced. In other words, the quantity decreases but the price increases.

In some cases, producers can, for example, take advantage of a change in packaging, to withdraw a certain amount of the product while maintaining the same price.

A technique that is not really new (it has been around for many years, about 10, and was first reported in the United States) that applies to many products, not just food. For example, we are talking about the reduction of wet food packets for animals but also about the “shrinkage” of snacks, pasta packs, drinks, etc.

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“Simplicity” sold at a high price

As consumers are increasingly attentive to the list of ingredients, some brands advertise their products emphasizing that they do not contain preservatives, additives, colorants, thus focusing on the simplicity of the recipe that is sold at a high price and that, sometimes, he is not even that precise in his description.

The magazine gives the example of a French reference “Maionese Amora” advertised as simple as that it is made with “5 ingredients and that’s it”. Upon sifting, it turns out that there is actually also a sixth, water, which should not even be present in the mayonnaise recipe.

as we read 60 Million Consumers:

The claim “5 ingredients and you’re good to go” is very limited, because, in fact, this product contains six of them. If we add all the ingredients indicated on the label, we obtain only 95%: 74% rapeseed oil, 8% white wine vinegar, 7.2% Dijon mustard (water, mustard, spirit vinegar, salt), 5, 1% egg yolk, 0.7% salt. Amora, whom we interviewed, explains that the missing 5% corresponds to “a small amount of water”. According to the European “Inco” regulation, which regulates the labeling of food products, the amount of added water “may not be taken into account if, by weight, it does not exceed 5% of the finished product”, and so it is. . Therefore, the manufacturer has the right not to mention it. We can still consider their claim of “5 ingredients and you’re done” to be very limited, as, in fact, this product contains six. With, among other things, a quite unexpected sixth ingredient, since the traditional mayonnaise recipe does not contain water!

Individual portions at a very high price

Sometimes it can be convenient to buy individual portions, but behind these there are often hidden prices (not to mention excess packaging), which generates exceptional margins for producers.

According to surveys carried out by the French magazine, a Caprice des Dieux cheese is sold in a pack of three individual portions costs 62% more per kilo than the classic version from 300 gr.

And there is also a big difference between coffee pods and ground coffee. In French supermarkets:

The “classic” ground coffee (Lavazza Il Matino) is exposed at 6.65 euros per kilo. The pack of capsules compatible with Nespresso (Carrefour Simpl) is sold at €19.80 per kilo, or almost triple! Same observation with the first biological reference (San Marco), at 44.07 euros per kilo while the price is 15.40 euros per kilo in the ground version (Carte Noire Bio).

Confuse consumers about the actual quantity and price

This trick is definitely more “subtle” and only the most attentive consumers will find it. We are talking about large packages, as you write 60 Million Consumers:

By purchasing a familiar product, homeowners are sure to please their entire tribe. But not necessarily your wallet!

Some examples? Sold in 4 or 8 slices, Fleury Michon “-25% salt” chicken breast slices have identical packaging: we find the same photo of the chicken slices, featured alongside a mixed salad, and the same endorsements . What changes?

In the pack of 4 slices they weigh 40 g while in the pack of 8 slices they only… 30 g! Therefore, the price per kilo ranges between €14.81 for the former and €16.04 for the latter. A trick that can mislead consumers who do not take the time to compare products. Because there is less in the pot and you pay more!

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Source: 60 Million Consumers

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