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Mars, Inc. is downsizing chocolate bars!

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  • Mars, Inc. is downsizing chocolate bars!

    In a move to control "calorie intake", Mars, Inc. is cutting the sizes of it's candy bars which I would have no problem with except that they aren't dropping the prices. Personally, I question Mars' sincerity when they claim it's a health issue given that companies that produce non-consumables such as toilet paper, paper towels, etc. are doing the same thing. They're counting on the consumer to be ignorant to the fact that the can of beans now contains 1.5 ounces less than it did in the past or that instead of getting 300 sheets of toilet paper, you're now get 280 sheets but you're paying the same price. It makes sense for the companies to do this since most people will notice a price increase but not a product decrease but at the same time, I can't help but feel it's a little underhanded. I was changing shelf labels the other day because of weight changes and in some cases, weight decreases and price increases combined but not one of the labels was for a price decrease due to less product. I think I'd rather a company be up front about their price increases rather than hope no one notices.



    Maker of Snickers to put its chocolate on a diet

    Wed Feb 15, 2012 8:20pm EST

    Feb 15 (Reuters) - Mars Inc, the maker of Snickers and Twix candy bars, will stop selling chocolate products with more than 250 calories in them by the end of next year, a spokeswoman said on Wednesday.

    The McClean, Virginia-based company, which also makes M&Ms and Skittles candies and Juicy Fruit chewing gum, said the goal is part of an ongoing effort to improve the nutritional value of its products and to sell them in a responsible way.

    The new calorie limit target means fans of the 540-calorie king-size Snickers bar might want to enjoy the big bar while they can. Come 2014, it's going to be gone, part of what Mars says is a broader push for responsible snacking.

    In 2007, the privately held company said it would stop buying advertising time or space if more than a quarter of the audience was likely to be under 12 years old.

    Mars has also said it will reduce sodium levels in all its products 25 percent by 2015.

    Spokeswoman Marlene Machut said the plan to stop shipping any chocolate product that exceeded 250 calories per portion by the end of 2013 - a target first announced last fall - was part of Mars' "broad-based commitment to health and nutrition."

    Several media organizations, including National Public Radio, reported on the chocolate bar down-sizing this week.

    Mars is one of the world's leading food manufacturers. In addition to candy, it makes Uncle Ben's rice and Dove ice cream bars as well as Pedigree and Whiskas brand pet food.
    Maker of Snickers to put its chocolate on a diet | Reuters

    (BTW, I know this is a consumer issue but Mars, Inc. claims it's a health one so that's why I used the health care forum.)

  • #2
    Re: Mars, Inc. is downsizing chocolate bars!

    Years ago, you could buy coffee, all coffee in 1 pound bags. I bought one last night that was 13 oz. Same deal.

    מה מכילות החדשות?


    • #3
      Re: Mars, Inc. is downsizing chocolate bars!

      Originally posted by Blue Doggy View Post
      Years ago, you could buy coffee, all coffee in 1 pound bags. I bought one last night that was 13 oz. Same deal.
      Which is why I'm calling bullshit on Mars, Inc. claim of calorie reduction...

      מה מכילות החדשות?


      • #4
        I see this phenomena occurring all over the place, and quite honestly, it's plainly evident that this reduction in the gross size of the overall product is simply another sign that it's more costly to do business NOW than it ever has been before...

        Fuel prices, Labor Unions, Onerous Taxation and Regulations. Not to mention Obama Care.

        The Markets rise and (Mostly) fall.

        And, at the end of the business day, they have to make a profit- Otherwise there's no point being in business in the first place.

        The interesting point for me is the fact that these companies are using this "Healthy Lifestyle Initiative" memes to ease this latest cost offset to the customer.

        The question I have is this: If these companies care so much about our health, WHY have they waited til now to start reducing portions?

        No, it's a good call on OPs part: This is B.S.

        Sent from my M865 using Tapatalk

        מה מכילות החדשות?


        • #5
          Re: Mars, Inc. is downsizing chocolate bars!

          Originally posted by Mrs. M View Post
          Which is why I'm calling bullshit on Mars, Inc. claim of calorie reduction...
          They've been doing that forever, shorting food stuff in containers, at some point we'll just be buying the container with nothing in it.

          מה מכילות החדשות?


          • #6
            Re: Mars, Inc. is downsizing chocolate bars!

            Originally posted by masterofdestiny View Post
            I see this phenomena occurring all over the place, and quite honestly, it's plainly evident that this reduction in the gross size of the overall product is simply another sign that it's more costly to do business NOW than it ever has been before...

            Fuel prices, Labor Unions, Onerous Taxation and Regulations. Not to mention Obama Care.

            The Markets rise and (Mostly) fall.

            And, at the end of the business day, they have to make a profit- Otherwise there's no point being in business in the first place.

            The interesting point for me is the fact that these companies are using this "Healthy Lifestyle Initiative" memes to ease this latest cost offset to the customer.

            The question I have is this: If these companies care so much about our health, WHY have they waited til now to start reducing portions?

            No, it's a good call on OPs part: This is B.S.

            Sent from my M865 using Tapatalk
            You forgot that with the destruction of the middle, the decades before that when it remained stagnant in wages, has caused a reduced demand for everything, including expensive little candy treats.

            Less demand, you lay off, and you look for ways to make maintain profit margins that you have to have, so you cut down portion size. It isn't just the reason you listed, as you left the DEMAND equation OUT, the way cons perpetually do. The reason is obvious as to why you guys do this too.

            If gov't drives up the cost of doing business, business reacts. If demand drops, because of gov't economic policy, domestic business reacts. A large prosperous middle allows business to just pass on additional costs by gov't. A dying, sick middle, makes em reduce the size. Or can you think in those terms?

            מה מכילות החדשות?


            • #7
              Re: Mars, Inc. is downsizing chocolate bars!

              "Calorie reduction" is corporate spin for reducing costs. Cocoa costs more in recent year its up about 200 to 250% compared to a couple years ago.

              מה מכילות החדשות?


              • #8
                Re: Mars, Inc. is downsizing chocolate bars!

                This is a fairly common phenominon for lower end (cheaper) goods but for things that cost more (even within food and drink) they will increase the price, and oddly enough, use it as a selling point! I.e. i used to buy a lot of fine Cognac in my drinking days, and a load of caviar but they never ever reduced the size of the 70CL bottle...they never gave 25 instead of 40 grams, and so on. Heck, they'd go out of their way to tell you how to import it/buy it on a plane and avoid customs and duty etc rather than ever question the price increase - its always a case of "well of course something as fine as this will cost this much, 50 bucks more is nothing!" Sometimes they'd even say "at least its some rich French producer getting rich instead of some tiny shop owner somewhere who probably originated from Bangladesh" etc. For some things, when the units are set, there's really no fudging with it. Its when the market for it is not something that is luxury but rather essential when folks apparently tend to focus more on the cost than the actual "goods", per se. I guess it makes sense though as its needed as an essential, to live.

                מה מכילות החדשות?


                • #9
                  Re: Mars, Inc. is downsizing chocolate bars!

                  Originally posted by JDJarvis View Post
                  "Calorie reduction" is corporate spin for reducing costs. Cocoa costs more in recent year its up about 200 to 250% compared to a couple years ago.
                  Amazingly, Gold Brick Eggs and Pecan Eggs, made by Elmer's in Pontchatoula, La. have only gone up 5 cents from last year in spite of pecans hitting a record high price this year. I make sugar-roasted pecans every Christmas for my friends and I had to scale back this year because even on sale, the pecans cost me $10/pound (shelled halves) and I ended up making 10 lbs of them!
                  ...thinking about Easter candy now...can't wait to get to work tomorrow and buy some more Heavenly Hash!

                  מה מכילות החדשות?


                  • #10
                    Re: Mars, Inc. is downsizing chocolate bars!

                    Originally posted by Mrs. M View Post
                    Amazingly, Gold Brick Eggs and Pecan Eggs, made by Elmer's in Pontchatoula, La. have only gone up 5 cents from last year in spite of pecans hitting a record high price this year. I make sugar-roasted pecans every Christmas for my friends and I had to scale back this year because even on sale, the pecans cost me $10/pound (shelled halves) and I ended up making 10 lbs of them!
                    ...thinking about Easter candy now...can't wait to get to work tomorrow and buy some more Heavenly Hash!
                    Candy is one of those items that has more gross margin for retailers. Years ago, our gross margin on candy, was 40 per cent. Candy and soft drinks have high gross margins. Beer on the other hand we used to only be able to get 23 per cent out of. Tobacco products yielded 30-32 percent overall, with smokeless and chewing tobacco coming in closer to 40, at that time, the late 70's. The federal tax increase made us to drop gross margins down on tobacco, and tobacco was no longer a high gross margin item.

                    We got illegal kickbacks on tobacco products for years, to help with the lower grosses. Being illegal, the wholesalers had a way to funnel it through candy, which you could get kickbacks on, as well as on milk. Beer was so tightly controlled you could get nothing out of the brewers, or the local distributorships.

                    On the choc candy, our schools have the kids sell candy each year, and I always help my grandkids out as they make a contest out of it. I just bought some 3 days ago, and the size of the chocolate bar looked to be 1/3 smaller than in the past 30 years. My wife noticed it first, since she is the candy eater here. They shrunk it, she said. She was right.

                    מה מכילות החדשות?


                    • #11
                      Re: Mars, Inc. is downsizing chocolate bars!

                      You damned kids should just be happy that you even have candy! Hell, back in my day the only damned thing we had was Rock Candy....made from rocks out of the creek. If you got lucky sometimes it would taste like catfish but otherwise it just tasted like rock. Of course it lasted a lot longer than candy nowadays. You could suck on that rock for weeks on end and it never got any smaller...not like this crap today that dissolves in your mouth.

                      מה מכילות החדשות?


                      • #12
                        Re: Mars, Inc. is downsizing chocolate bars!

                        Plus, at their age in life, they should be grateful to even have their own teeth, right?

                        I mean, err...wrong thread probably, haha.

                        מה מכילות החדשות?


                        • #13
                          Re: Mars, Inc. is downsizing chocolate bars!

                          Originally posted by Blue Doggy View Post
                          Candy is one of those items that has more gross margin for retailers. Years ago, our gross margin on candy, was 40 per cent. Candy and soft drinks have high gross margins. Beer on the other hand we used to only be able to get 23 per cent out of. Tobacco products yielded 30-32 percent overall, with smokeless and chewing tobacco coming in closer to 40, at that time, the late 70's. The federal tax increase made us to drop gross margins down on tobacco, and tobacco was no longer a high gross margin item.

                          We got illegal kickbacks on tobacco products for years, to help with the lower grosses. Being illegal, the wholesalers had a way to funnel it through candy, which you could get kickbacks on, as well as on milk. Beer was so tightly controlled you could get nothing out of the brewers, or the local distributorships.

                          On the choc candy, our schools have the kids sell candy each year, and I always help my grandkids out as they make a contest out of it. I just bought some 3 days ago, and the size of the chocolate bar looked to be 1/3 smaller than in the past 30 years. My wife noticed it first, since she is the candy eater here. They shrunk it, she said. She was right.
                          Seasonal candy is still a decent margin for me, especially since so much of it is local but I make very, very little directly off soft drinks bread, milk or eggs. Those things are in the store as a convenience to the customer but many stop in to avoid going to the grocery store or Wal-Mart for those items and they end up buying other products as well. My biggest profit margin is on plastics (toys, containers...basically anything plastic), paper products and clothes. I'm not sure how well I'll do this year on clothes though because the prices have gone up and the customer knows that my summer clothes will be reduced in a few months so they'll wait to buy them.
                          In the bar business, we made very little off beer but made a huge profit on liquor. The beer companies, though, found ways to help us by creating our signs for special events, sending out the Bud girls, donating things for raffles for benefits and supplying our bar lights.
                          You're right about the school candy getting smaller! I bought some from a neighborhood kid even though I don't eat it and was amazed how small it had gotten.
                          BTW, I hope everyone has ordered their Girl Scout Cookies! If you don't eat them (I try not to), you can always order them to be shipped to the troops (which I did).

                          מה מכילות החדשות?


                          • #14
                            Re: Mars, Inc. is downsizing chocolate bars!

                            Originally posted by lutherf View Post
                            You damned kids should just be happy that you even have candy! Hell, back in my day the only damned thing we had was Rock Candy....made from rocks out of the creek. If you got lucky sometimes it would taste like catfish but otherwise it just tasted like rock. Of course it lasted a lot longer than candy nowadays. You could suck on that rock for weeks on end and it never got any smaller...not like this crap today that dissolves in your mouth.
                            You poor, poor child! (Btw, I do love Rock Candy and buy it every time I go to Cracker Barrel!)

                            מה מכילות החדשות?


                            • #15
                              Re: Mars, Inc. is downsizing chocolate bars!

                              Originally posted by lutherf View Post
                              You damned kids should just be happy that you even have candy! Hell, back in my day the only damned thing we had was Rock Candy....made from rocks out of the creek. If you got lucky sometimes it would taste like catfish but otherwise it just tasted like rock. Of course it lasted a lot longer than candy nowadays. You could suck on that rock for weeks on end and it never got any smaller...not like this crap today that dissolves in your mouth.
                              God, you wealthy always had it so easy. In my day the creek rocks were for the rich kids. We poor people had to break up boulders, and it wasn't just for candy. Stone Soup was the main staple of our diet, though once a week we were given a handful of dirt as a garnish.

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