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Shrinkflation

Discuss beer or anything else that comes to mind in here.

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S. St. Jeb
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Shrinkflation

Post by S. St. Jeb »

I'm sure you've all seen where companies reduce the size of an item instead of increasing the price. I hate the practice.

Anyway, saw a 'new' listing for Carlesberg in the LCBO which seemed strange. Sure enough, they are moving from a 500 mL can to a 473 mL can. $3.00 for the 500, $2.95 for the 473. Aside from the marginal increase in cents/mL, I suppose they like the $2.95 vs $3.00 for psychological reasons.

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Post by JerCraigs »

S. St. Jeb wrote: Sat Sep 16, 2023 2:03 pm Anyway, saw a 'new' listing for Carlesberg in the LCBO which seemed strange. Sure enough, they are moving from a 500 mL can to a 473 mL can. $3.00 for the 500, $2.95 for the 473. Aside from the marginal increase in cents/mL, I suppose they like the $2.95 vs $3.00 for psychological reasons.
I wonder if they are also changing can suppliers and/or where it is brewed?

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Cass
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Post by Cass »

S. St. Jeb wrote: Sat Sep 16, 2023 2:03 pm I'm sure you've all seen where companies reduce the size of an item instead of increasing the price. I hate the practice.
I've moaned about this on the forum numerous times before, but this with "pints" is a big beef of mine. Maybe it's overall good for my health anyway, but I see at many bars that their 'regular' beers are 14oz nowadays.

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MatttthewGeorge
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Post by MatttthewGeorge »

JerCraigs wrote: Sun Sep 17, 2023 9:06 pm
S. St. Jeb wrote: Sat Sep 16, 2023 2:03 pm Anyway, saw a 'new' listing for Carlesberg in the LCBO which seemed strange. Sure enough, they are moving from a 500 mL can to a 473 mL can. $3.00 for the 500, $2.95 for the 473. Aside from the marginal increase in cents/mL, I suppose they like the $2.95 vs $3.00 for psychological reasons.
I wonder if they are also changing can suppliers and/or where it is brewed?
Carlesberg bought out Waterloo brewing and it's now being brewed there. Everything else out of that brewery is in a 473ml so it only makes sense to have Carlesberg move to that size as well.
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Post by seangm »

It'll be the last straw for me if my favourite euros downsize from 500 ml to 473 ml. I've never liked 473 since it's always just a little underfilled in most of my glasses. 500 ml is generally perfect, although if we're talking a true imperial pint they should be 568 ml, however only a handful of UK imports are that size anymore.

And don't get me started on the 14 oz serving size. That's a half beer lol

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S. St. Jeb
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Post by S. St. Jeb »

MatttthewGeorge wrote: Mon Sep 18, 2023 5:00 pm Carlesberg bought out Waterloo brewing and it's now being brewed there. Everything else out of that brewery is in a 473ml so it only makes sense to have Carlesberg move to that size as well.
Matthew is right, of course. I hadn't thought of that when I had my little rant, so it's not really shrinkflation in this case.

I've also noticed new listings recently for Ontario-made Faxe and Holsten beers, which must be being brewed at Amsterdam.

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Post by seangm »

On the topic of shrinkflation but in a somewhat different way, my perception is that beers are getting worse. Not bad per se, but I'm trying more and more that just seem to be a little lacking in body, lacking in hops or malt; just flatter overall. Collective's new TIPA (Hot Fuzz) for instance was so light bodied and mild I honestly thought it was a mis-labelled single IPA - again, it wasn't bad per se, but it did not have the impact I'd except for a TIPA. Some beers I drink semi-regularly seem to be affected too, everything seem dialed down just a bit.

I suspect breweries are experimenting with ways of reducing raw material inputs to combat increased costs and honestly I get it. Luxuries are the first to go when times are tight economically, and craft beer/premium beverages are definitely a luxury. I imagine breweries know there's only so much the market can bear in terms of pricing, apart from a handful of really small scale/specialty breweries (Badlands, Third Moon for instance) that have been able to carve out a niche in that higher priced space.

Curious if anyone else finds themselves feeling similarly about a lot of the stuff being released today; and regular items for that matter.

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Post by MatttthewGeorge »

seangm wrote: Fri Nov 10, 2023 10:01 am Curious if anyone else finds themselves feeling similarly about a lot of the stuff being released today; and regular items for that matter.
Yes, absolutely! Definitely in the one-off/seasonal categories, I've noticed lighter/thinner beers and often wondered if it had more to do with costs than with style. I haven't noticed it so much in regular items, but I generally drink German imports or GL Canuck regularly, and haven't noticed any difference there.

I've heard rumour of many breweries experimenting with hop and malt extracts more as well. If that's the case, it would definitely effect the body of the beer, even if the extracts or the process is better now.
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S. St. Jeb
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Post by S. St. Jeb »

seangm wrote: Fri Nov 10, 2023 10:01 am I suspect breweries are experimenting with ways of reducing raw material inputs to combat increased costs
Amazing timing for you to make this comment. I just saw an article yesterday about this and there's even a word for it. Skimpflation.

https://www.cbc.ca/news/business/skimpf ... -1.7021544

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Post by seangm »

S. St. Jeb wrote: Fri Nov 10, 2023 10:41 am
seangm wrote: Fri Nov 10, 2023 10:01 am I suspect breweries are experimenting with ways of reducing raw material inputs to combat increased costs
Amazing timing for you to make this comment. I just saw an article yesterday about this and there's even a word for it. Skimpflation.

https://www.cbc.ca/news/business/skimpf ... -1.7021544
You know I think I scrolled past that headline the other day and it put the thought in my head as I was drinking that CA triple.

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Post by seangm »

MatttthewGeorge wrote: Fri Nov 10, 2023 10:22 am
seangm wrote: Fri Nov 10, 2023 10:01 am Curious if anyone else finds themselves feeling similarly about a lot of the stuff being released today; and regular items for that matter.
Yes, absolutely! Definitely in the one-off/seasonal categories, I've noticed lighter/thinner beers and often wondered if it had more to do with costs than with style. I haven't noticed it so much in regular items, but I generally drink German imports or GL Canuck regularly, and haven't noticed any difference there.

I've heard rumour of many breweries experimenting with hop and malt extracts more as well. If that's the case, it would definitely effect the body of the beer, even if the extracts or the process is better now.
I agree, I notice it more in seasonal releases as they come around vs. regularly available items. I drink a lot of Canuck too, as well as Pilsner Urquell and thankfully they've remained very constant over the years.

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Post by midlife crisis »

Yeah, as noted the 500 ml vs. 473 ml can thing is a handy way to determine if an "import" is actually imported. If it's in a 473 ml. can, it was brewed in Canada; 500's are from Europe. Not completely sure about USA (they don't list ml's on the can if brewed for the domestic US market?)

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Cass
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Post by Cass »

On the subject of shrinkflation, maybe I’m just getting ornery in my old age but I just cannot stand this. Clearly the bartender knows what they’re doing. (And I have no problem naming names, it's Beertown.)
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Post by midlife crisis »

Agree! So do act like a bit of a dick and ask for a top-up, or quietly pay too much for too little?

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Cass
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Post by Cass »

midlife crisis wrote: Wed Nov 22, 2023 8:40 am Agree! So do act like a bit of a dick and ask for a top-up, or quietly pay too much for too little?
I can't bring myself to be a dick about it at the bar. I'll just talk about them behind their back on forums :)

In all seriousness though, I have been noticing it more and more there which is unfortunate. I've found an older school British pub not far away that still does 18/20oz glasses and the beer selection is passable. So I'll probably "quiet quit" on them and migrate my business for the time being.

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