In the past few years I’ve written extensively about “pack shrinkage”, involving everything from soap and chocolate slabs to tomato sauce and pet food which has been repackaged in slighter smaller packs in the hope that consumers won’t notice.
I’ve often made the point that if manufacturers weren’t being sneaky about it – if they wanted consumers to know the products were now “more affordable”, as they put it – they’d announce “now in smaller pack” on their new packaging.
But they don’t do that.
Beacon has borne out my point with its new Fizz Pop packaging.
The sucker hasn’t shrunk – it’s grown from 13g to 20.5g.
Interestingly, the sucker shrank in 2004 from 15g to 13g, and the subtle downsizing may well have continued – as has happened with many chocolate bars – but for the fact that Fizz Pop has acquired a host of competitors which have all gone big, making the Fizz Pop’s appeal fizzle.
Yogueta first shook up the market with its “big head” sucker, and Fizz Pop’s other competitors, including Monsta Pop, Big Pop and Pin Pop, followed suit, all being between 20g and 30g. Not only that, they came up with exciting combinations of flavours, making Fizz Pop look puny and boring in comparison.
So in January last year, Beacon – part of the Tiger Brands stable – introduced the bigger Fizz Pop, sugar division marketing manager Sian Loehrer told Consumer Watch.
The price went up by 30 percent, but without any “consumer messaging” on the wrapper about the bigger size, consumers didn’t embrace the new suckers.
“They would not have known that the size had increased unless they bought the product, and they weren’t buying the product as the price increase was perceived to be prohibitive,” Loehrer said.
That’s when the company decided to go big with its “bigger” message on the label.
It was a costly exercise, reprinting the entire range of flavours, and a new pack design is now on the cards.
All in the name of getting more longer-lasting balls of sugar into people’s mouths.
Of course, there was no “smaller pop” announcement when the Fizz Pop shrank in 2004. Funny, that!