Wednesday, May 31, 2017

1801 Bonus: 20% Less, Same Low Price


Stolenimage photo

This is a quiz.  How many pieces of peanut are in the jar?  Closest guess gets the following grand prize:

--100 aspirins in a bottle that holds only 125 pills.
--a one pound carton of spaghetti that weighs a full pound, not 13.5 ounces or maybe 12.
--a pint of beer that has 16 ounces, not 14.

Containers for food and medicine must be mighty expensive, else they’d make more sizes so that you could reach the 30th of 30 anti-cholesterol pills in a bottle that could easily hold 300.

The other day we found a bottle of Advil that was full.  First thought: the filling machine lost count. But not so.  220 on the label, 220 in the bottle. (There was room for the “free” extra 20 in the bottle made for 200, but that’s an oversize within reason.)

Next time you buy a bottle of 200 low dose aspirin, note that the pills barely coat the bottom of the container. You could store two bags of M&Ms in that space.

But, you say, the bottles need to be visible on the shelf in the drug store or the grocery.  True. So make them taller and thinner and fill ‘em up.

The gas tank on a 2015 Toyota Camry holds 17 gallons, at least according to the owner’s manual.  But there’s really room for more and still have air space so the gas tank works properly.  Why?  Because we can’t read a fuel gauge?  Or see the ugly and distracting light on the dashboard that tells us we’d better land a refuel?

Who knows?
This trend toward auditorium size cans, bottles and gas tanks probably started with the clandestine price increases of candy bars and ice cream packages.  The price of a carton of ice cream has been fairly stable since the ice age.  The container size has been the same since the invention of cardboard.  But the contents shrink.  That’s a price increase.

If 220 pills fit in a 200 pill bottle of headache remedy, why can’t they just put in 220 all the time and raise the price a few cents.  

Full containers are more satisfying than ones that look like they’ve been raided and put back on the shelf.

And where did the 14 ounce “pint” come from?

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