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Navigating Shrinkflation: How To Stretch Your Dollar

Have you noticed that your favourite snack doesn’t quite satisfy your hunger like it used to? Or that the shampoo bottle seems to empty quicker than before? Well, you’re not alone. What you’re experiencing might be the effects of something called “shrinkflation.”

Understanding shrinkflation

The short version: Shrinkflation is when the stuff you buy gets smaller or has less, but the price you pay stays the same.

The long version: Essentially, shrinkflation is when companies reduce the size of their products while keeping the price the same—or, in some cases, even increasing it. This can affect anything from food items to household products, leaving you probably feeling like you’re getting less bang for your buck. And, no surprise, it’s connected to inflation.

As the costs for raw materials, transportation, and production increase, companies are trying to find ways to offset the additional costs. The downside? Like we mentioned, this means companies are shrinking product sizes—while sometimes increasing prices—to keep their profit margins.

And, while it might seem like a small change, these changes can truly add up and impact your budget over time. But there are ways you can stay ahead of the game.

Tips to fight shrinkflation

1. Price per unit comparison

Instead of focusing solely on the price tag, calculate the price per unit (ounce, gram, milliliter, etc.). This will help you make an apples-to-apples comparison between different package sizes and brands, ensuring you get the best value.

2. Go for generic brands and labels

Think about getting the no-name brands (you know, the ones without fancy labels). They can be just as good and cost less.

3. Buy in bulk

Consider buying non-perishable items, like pasta or toilet paper, in bulk. You save more money in the long run, and fewer trips to the store, too. Win-win!

4. Hunt for deals and shop around

Keep an eye out for coupons in newspapers, magazines, or online. Coupons can get you sweet deals on things you need, saving you some serious cash. Similarly, check to see if any stories have sales that can help you score bigger portions of your favourites and essentials for less.

5. Cashback apps and loyalty programs

Use special apps or loyalty cards from your favourite stores to earn back some of the money you spend on groceries. These are great as they can help you by being used towards future purchases.

6. Have a shopping and meal plan

One effective strategy to combat shrinkflation while also saving money is planning ahead. By having a budget and a grocery list, you can ensure you’re buying what you need without any produce or food going to waste. And by also planning your meals ahead of time, you can create a shopping list with specific quantities in mind.

Conclusion

Shrinkflation might be a sneaky challenge, but if you’re armed with the knowledge and a solid plan, you can tackle it head-on. By using coupons and cashback deals, thinking about the price per unit, and embracing meal planning, you can make your hard-earned dollars stretch a little more, especially in this economy.

So go ahead, grab that bag of chips, but do so with a savvy shopper’s mindset. Your wallet—and pantry and fridge—will thank you!

If shrinkflation (and inflation) is making it difficult to save and you’re feeling stressed or overwhelmed about your money situation, contact us today. We’re here to listen and give you the tools to help you start feeling better about your money.