Less goods for the same price? This form of hidden price increase is commonplace in supermarkets. As of today, the Hamburg consumer advice center offers the opportunity to vote for such brazen cheating products.

Consumers can again vote on the “deceptive package of the year”. The Hamburg Consumer Advice Center (VZHH), which is awarding the prize for the ninth time, is presenting five products with which, in the opinion of consumer advocates, manufacturers have particularly misled their customers.

For months, many people have had the impression that everything is getting more expensive when they stand at the supermarket checkout and pay for their groceries. But in addition to the usual price increases, manufacturers often continue to reduce the content of their products and the price in retail remains the same or increases slightly, so that both sides – manufacturer and retail – benefit. However, concrete indications of the shrinkage of the content are often missing and the manufacturers sometimes even try to conceal the smaller quantity with virtually identical packs. At the same time, companies waste resources with this scam because more unnecessary packaging waste is often produced.

In 2022, more consumers than ever before complained to the Hamburg consumer advice center about the less-in scam. In August, September and October last year alone, more than 700 complaints were received by consumer protection agencies. “But what we receive and record is probably just the tip of the iceberg,” explains Armin Valet from the VZHH. Manufacturers often not only reduce the content of a product, but trim all varieties of a product brand for profit. In addition to branded articles, private labels have also been increasingly affected by hidden price increases.

Five particularly bold cases are now up for election for the unflattering award. Consumers have until January 22, 6 p.m. to vote here. The result will be published on January 23rd.

The nominees for the “Sham Pack of the Year 2022” are:

In recent years, Homann’s “Paprika Sauce” (2021), Seitenbacher’s muesli (2020), Mar’s MirĂ¡coli pasta dish (2019), Lorenz Snack-World’s crisps (2018), Dr . Oetker (2017), Danone Waters’ Evian water (2016), Johnson’s Bebe soft cream

(This article was first published on Thursday, January 05, 2023.)