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Paying more but getting less at the grocery store. Welcome to Shrinkflation.

Americans are paying the same or even more for their favorite products but are getting less in return.

PHOENIX — Millions of Americans are paying for their favorite food and items but are getting less in return.

The problem? Many are facing the problem right now and don’t’ even know it.

“It kind of feels like you’ve been had,” says Professor Hitendra Chaturvedi with Arizona State University’s W.P. Carey School of Business.

The practice is called Shrinkflation, and it's been around a long time.

"Shrinkflation is nothing more than getting less product if not the same, but more price and people not telling you about it,” says Chaturvedi.

RELATED: Manufacturers quietly shrinking package sizes without lowering prices

He says COVID-19 and rising gas prices have forced businesses to pay more for labor and materials.

When this happens he says companies have three choices:

  • Transfer pricing – transfer the increase in cost to consumers
  • Reduce their own profits and shield the consumer by absorbing cost increases
  • Reduce the size – what we call shrinkflation

“Guess what they did? They not only reduced the size of the product which was step 1, but they also increased the size of the product, he says.”

He says in some instances some products have been reduced in size by as much as 20 percent.

“We check the price, but we don’t check how much we buy month to month because we assume the weight isn’t going to change and that’s what some of these companies are counting on.

He says because of the increased cost, and shrinkage of products the real cost of current inflation for American consumers is at 20 percent.

RELATED: Inflation divides spending habits for low-income, wealthier shoppers

Here’s a list of some of the products Chaturvedi says have been impacted by size reductions 

                                           Original   New   Reduction                           

  • Cottenelle                               340    312    8%
  • Sun Maid Raisins                   22.58  20     11%
  • Folgers                                   51      43.5  15%
  • Chobani                                 5.3     4.5    15%
  • Dove body wash                   24      22    8%
  • Safegaurd soap                     4        3.2    20%
  • Charmin                                 264      244   8%
  • Keebler cookies (w M&M)     11.3    9.75  14%
  • Gatorade                                32      28    13%
  • Crest Toothpase                   4.1      3.8    7%
  • Gain detergent                     165    154   7%
  • Tostitoes hint of Lime            13     11   15%
  • Quaker Oats - strawberry     10    8     20%
  • GM Cereals                         20.1  19    5%

“In the ideal world we should have been told that we are reducing the size because my (companies) raw material cost and my labor costs have increased,” Chadurvedi said.

There are websites available for consumers to check out products that be reduced in size.

VERSIÓN EN ESPAÑOL: ¿Pagar más pero obtener menos en el supermercado?

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