Tuesday, February 24, 2009

More for Less? Better than Less for More

This is from the NPR show called Marketplace, an irreverent and usually spot-on business-and-money-show on public radio:

"Bob Moon's final note... Maybe you've noticed packages and portions getting smaller while the price has stayed the same?Those skimpy ice cream cartons, for example, that no longer give you a full half-gallon. Well, seems more consumers have been finding a better value in store-label alternatives. And the big brands have taken notice.The Wall Street Journal reports today that Heinz has increased the size of its ketchup bottles. So you'll see a bigger container for a similar price, sitting next to the private-label offering. Likewise, Frito-Lay, which plans to add 20 percent more to bags of chips, without increasing the price."

http://marketplace.publicradio.org/episodes/show_rundown.php?show_id=14 , 2.23.2009

So the food corporations finally figured out that we're not stupid? I wonder if they will also:
  • stop putting things in huge, half-empty packages thinking we don't notice that either?
  • quit telling us something is new and improved when it's the same product but in a new "improved" package?
  • not call something "natural" when it's clearly processed (like Cheerios--how is that natural? I've never seen oats grow in circles on the stalks.)
  • stop trying to convince us that fast food is healthy? We know it's not; the advertisers are the only ones deluded by the ads--if even they believe their own words.
  • put some normal-looking people in the ads? but I suppose that would really kill sales. A recent news item on Hotmail showed the "three hottest faces" on this Spring's fashion runways. To me they looked like mug shots of women arrested for meth abuse. I don't mean to sound mean, but I honestly thought that's what the photos were before I read the blurb. Now I am what Alexander McCall Smith calls, in his Number 1 Ladies Detective Agency series, a "traditionally built woman." Which means overweight--and that is not a good thing either. But please don't hold up emaciated women who look miserable as the premium beauties of our day. (I can't find that article right off, but this one shows a model who exemplifies what I mean.)

This move by food processing companies is a step in the right direction; they have a lot more steps to take before they regain my trust in their products or their ads.


Carol said...

The tragedy is what the popular image of female beauty is doing to girls as young as 5 or 6 -- already worrying about their weight and looks.

Carol said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
City Mouse said...

When I started reading labels and doing this healthy eating thing, I could not even believe what I was seeing. The obscene levels of sugar, salt, bad oils, and calories in prepackaged food is disgusting.

Susan said...

Oh I hate deceptive advertising and labeling. Who wants to pay money to someone insulting our intelligence?

Loved this post!

solsticedreamer~laoi gaul~williams said...

'traditionally built women' i love it! although a little overweight i have always been what my nan calls 'big boned'. recently when talking about my great gran~a pub owning woman called ada duke~i was told 'you look just like her, you even wear your hair the same'~yes i guess i really am traditionally built!

Granny Sue said...

It didn't used to be such an issue in the times when youthful looks and boniness was not the holy grail. Of course, we want to live longer and being a good weight plays into that certainly. But the drive to be as thin as possible is hurtful to younf women, sapping their self-confidence and not doing their health any favors either.

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