Monday, July 01, 2013

1194 Giant Economy Size

1194 The Giant Economy Size

It may be summer.  It may be hot.  But that doesn’t stop the onset of snow jobs.

How’s this one hit you:  The Giant Economy Size -- of anything -- is a myth.  Madison Avenue and economists of every school have tried to tell us that if you buy coffee in the big size can, you’re paying less per pound than when you buy a smaller can.

Most supermarkets use “unit pricing” labels on their shelves.  How much costs what.  The stores don’t want you to know this stuff, but somehow their lobby wasn’t strong enough to prevent most states from enacting the mandate.  Now you know this stuff.   

You can lead a shopper to a label, but you can’t make him read it.

So, are you surprised to learn that, say, Triscuit crackers cost less per ounce in the small size than in the big one?

How about laundry detergent.  Same story.

Coffee.

Soft drinks.

Sweeping cloths.

Paper towels.

Practically anything you want today, you run the risk of paying more per unit when you buy the Giant Economy Size.

Marketing genius.  Check it out.  All you have to do is read the labels.  Not only do you get less for your money but your spatial relations ability is challenged.  You buy the big boxes or cans and you have to store them.

Most kitchen cabinets are not built to handle a 48.3 ounce can of beef stew.  You find new ways to use space, space that you never knew you had.  

The shelf-killer packages the warehouse and shopping “clubs” sell are another matter, entirely.  Usually it’s one size fits none.  But if you need canola oil in 55 gallon barrels, that’s the place to go.

You can buy the Giant Economy Size boxes of berries at Sam’s, Costco and the unfortunately named BJ’s.  Great if you’re feeding a regiment.  But not so good if you’re a normal household.  By the time you get toward the middle of your regimental berry supply, much of what’s left has spoiled.

How’s THAT for savings, shoppers?

Shrapnel (coupon edition):

--It’s mid year and time to clean out your coupon collection.  You know you clip and save a zillion a year but almost never use them.  And it’s an almost-sure bet that half the ones you’ve been hoarding are out of date.

--Coupon expiration times are getting shorter and shorter.  This is a service to checkout people who can torture you by telling you your coupon is out of date.  They have in-store contests for cashiers who collect the most out of date coupons per shift.

--Coupons are a plot, anyway.  They’re designed to make you want things you wouldn’t ordinarily buy in the hopes that you’ll love the product and continue to buy it at sticker price.  Or they’re designed to make you buy store brands instead of the same Bounty or Green Giant or Tide you’ve been successfully using for decades.

I’m Wes Richards. My opinions are my own but you’re welcome to them. ®
Please address comments to wesrichards@gmail.com
© WJR 2103

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