'Shrinkflation' now widespread in goods and services

"Shrinkflation" is spreading worldwide. Companies are reducing the size of products or range of services due to the price of raw materials rising. They are also placing smaller numbers of items in larger boxes, so shoppers think they are getting more for their money. Shrinking the size of products cuts costs. Consumers are more sensitive to price than quantity or quality. Most people will buy something if the price is the same, even if it has shrunk.

A chocolate bar maker has shrunk the size of its products to protect profits. It said it is absorbing costs by "slightly reducing the weight of chocolate bars" so that it can remain competitive. The service industry is also trying to avoid price rises. Hotels have made housekeeping services "opt in". This means that guests must now ask to get their room cleaned. Other free services we take for granted are disappearing or being shrunk.