"Discover Cooking, Discuss Life."

Go Back   Discuss Cooking - Cooking Forums > General Cooking Information > Menu Planning > Today's Menu
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 01-08-2010, 02:57 AM   #1
Head Chef
 
Rob Babcock's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: USA
Posts: 1,281
Rant: Yet Another Food Company Ripoff

It's a well known and oft-discussed fact that more and more the food companies are ripping off unwary consumers by putting less product in the same size package and charging the same price. But it used to be that "flagship" brands and products were still the same, albeit there's not as much in each package. Sadly, now I see the quality is also taking a beating.

After a couple days of being basically snowed in, things were cleared enough
today to make a trip to the grocery store. Even though I've spent most of my life working as a chef, I'm not a complete food snob; I still like many of the comfort foods of my youth. One such favorite is tuna & noodles, which my Mom usually made with shells. It's basically pasta shells, canned cream of mushroom soup, onions (sometimes peas) and canned tuna. Normally when I buy processed tuna I get the foil packages, which are far superior to canned, but the closest market to me just has cans. Jonesing for some comfort food I bought a couple cans of Chicken of the Sea, which used to be a good product for what it is...well, it's not any longer. It's just pulverized tuna dust floating in a can of water! Seriously, in two cans combined there weren't 5 chunks large enough to identify as having come from a fish. This isn't a total fluke, either. A couple months ago I bought the same brand from a different store to make tuna sandwiches and I noticed the same thing. Obviously there's variation in an agricultural/animal product but having eaten a lot of canned tuna over the years I've never seen crap like this before, even in the cheapest store brands.

And can anyone refresh my memory, didn't a can of tuna used to be six or seven ounces? Now they're five ounces (about 4oz drained). The pouches have gotten a little bit smaller, too, but at least with them there's very little added water or waste, and you can instantly determine how much is in the package.

I don't know about you but I'd much rather pay a little more to get a decent product. I understand the need to make a profit but I'm tired of purchasing crap. While I'm ranting, have you noticed that even the more expensive frozen produce brands like Bird's Eye have gone to nearly all fully-printed packaging, probably to disguise the fact that the product is sub-par? Last time I bought frozen
Bird's Eye broccoli florettes the bag was mostly stems. In my area Sam's Club is about the only place to buy decent quality frozen veggies anymore.

I wonder how much further the Big Food Companies can push consumers til we finally decide not to take it anymore?



__________________

__________________
If we're not supposed to eat animals, then how come they're made out of meat?
Rob Babcock is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2010, 05:42 AM   #2
Assistant Cook
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 16
Unfortunatly this seems to have become a new trend. I was going to buy a box of brand name cereal at $2 a box thinking it was a bargain until I realized it was only 12 oz instead of 16oz. I am pretty thrify and tend to stay away from name brands unless it's a super bargain. The tuna in cans, which I use pretty frequently, has gone downhill over the years. What used to be a nice compact fully formed chunk is now sort of floaty pieces in water. I'm too cheap to buy the packaged over canned because Winco has bumblebee tuna at about $2 a big can all the time and the sealed bags at almost $4 which is probably a scam in itself. I'm just too tired to figure out why.
__________________

__________________
sallynilly is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2010, 05:52 AM   #3
Executive Chef
 
justplainbill's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Eastern Long Island, New York
Posts: 4,206
Last time I checked, Bumble Bee and Progresso solid white were still pretty good (except for the reduced can size).
__________________
justplainbill is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2010, 06:30 AM   #4
Head Chef
 
Rob Babcock's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: USA
Posts: 1,281
I used to see Bumblebee on the shelves all the time but I haven't seen for a few years now.
__________________
If we're not supposed to eat animals, then how come they're made out of meat?
Rob Babcock is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2010, 06:42 AM   #5
Executive Chef
 
justplainbill's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Eastern Long Island, New York
Posts: 4,206
Conagra acquired Bumblebee along with a bunch of other brands several years ago. Then Conagra shafted its shareholders by selling the Bumblebee franchise to Bumblebee's management at a lowball price.
__________________
justplainbill is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2010, 07:47 AM   #6
Executive Chef
 
Selkie's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Arkansas
Posts: 3,796
Check out the bottom of the Yoplait containers. They're at least an inch above the outside edge of the side at the widest part... a waste of 30% of the packaging material and an optical illusion as to how much yogurt you are actually getting... Clearly a rip-off!!!
__________________
"Food is our common ground, a universal experience." - James Beard
Selkie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2010, 08:33 AM   #7
Executive Chef
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: USA,Florida
Posts: 3,834
I've noticed some products with the changes mentioned. One that really gets me is prepared greens that have so many stems that by the time you remove them there is enough left for one decent sized salad. Some varieties I've stopped purchasing. BTW, I use Bumble Bee tuna and believe it to be a good product.
__________________
Be an organ donor; give your heart to Jesus.
Exercise daily; walk with the Lord.
licia is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2010, 09:03 AM   #8
Master Chef
 
Michael in FtW's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Fort Worth, TX
Posts: 6,592
The "downsizing" trend has been going on for 2-3 years - they have even had reports about it on the evening news. I first noticed it with coffee, then cereal, tuna got downsized over a year ago. The "logic" was that instead of raising prices due to increased production costs they would just decrease the package amount so it wouldn't cost the consumer more. Huh?
__________________
"It ain't what you don't know that gets you in trouble. It's what you know for sure that just ain't so." - Mark Twain
Michael in FtW is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2010, 09:12 AM   #9
Senior Cook
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Midwest
Posts: 258
Send a message via AIM to Mark Webster
Chef Rob,
The food companies have been making this the trend in recent years about lowering the amount of product they offer in a container.Your point about the packged Tuna is right on the money. The quality has dropped along with the weight.
__________________
Mark Webster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2010, 09:42 AM   #10
Chief Eating Officer
 
GB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: USA,Massachusetts
Posts: 25,509
I have been hearing about this for many years now. Coffee and cereal were the two things that every few years I seemed to hear were lowering the amounts they were putting in the package while keeping the prices the same or sometimes even raising them.
__________________

__________________
You know you can't resist clicking
this link. Your eyes will thank you. VISUAL BLISS
GB is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



» Discuss Cooking on Facebook

Our Communities

Our communities encompass many different hobbies and interests, but each one is built on friendly, intelligent membership.

» More about our Communities

Automotive Communities

Our Automotive communities encompass many different makes and models. From U.S. domestics to European Saloons.

» More about our Automotive Communities

Marine Communities

Our Marine websites focus on Cruising and Sailing Vessels, including forums and the largest cruising Wiki project on the web today.

» More about our Marine Communities


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 09:53 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.