Highway froggery: Getting less Freddo for your money
It's a treat loved by generations of sweet tooths but Freddo frog now costs shoppers an arm and a frog leg.
Confectionery giant Cadbury has caused outrage by shrinking the share packet size of the popular chocolate treat from 15 frogs per pack to 12 but leaving the price unchanged.
Consumers will now have to fork out the marked price of $5 for 144g of frogs rather than the previous 180g available.
This works out to 36g less or a 20 per cent decrease in chocolate for the same price, with shoppers paying 3.47 cents per gram up from 2.78 cents per gram.
The frogs inside the bags are 12g each, meaning you now pay 41.6 cents per frog, up from 33.3 cents per frog.
Supermarket expert Dr Gary Mortimer from the Queensland University of Technology said Cadbury and other food manufacturers were guilty of "shrinkflation", a tactic where the product contents reduce but the price stays the same.
Dr Mortimer said brands such as Cadbury resorted to shrinkflation in products to keep up with rising costs.
"We see it in lollies, in biscuits, in cereal. Cadbury has done it before with their chocolate blocks, which went from a family block of 250g down to 200g and now 180g," Dr Mortimer said.
"Brands have three options, they can increase the price of the product to curb increases in ingredients and supply costs, they can keep the price and contents the same and incur a loss, or they can sell the product for the same price but reduce the content, which is shrinkflation."
Dr Mortimer said brands weren't breaking any rules but said shoppers should keep an eye on product sizes to save money.
"Always look at the unit price, the shelf label will tell you the best product which represents the best value for money."
Cadbury's marketing director Paul Chatfield said he would have "preferred to avoid" downsizing Freddo packs but the company had done so because of production costs.
"It's been five years since we last reviewed the size of our Cadbury sharepacks and … our costs have gone up over this time," he said.
Originally published as Highway froggery: Getting less Freddo for your money