A Victim of Shrinkflation!

Monique picked up a brand name package of Swiss cheese recently. I immediately reacted, “Hey! That’s just like we bought when I was a kid!” It was labeled as a full slice, and I remembered how I would eat one of those every day for my after-school snack. In recent years, we have become accustomed to non-brand products that package only half slices. I had naively reasoned that the “economy slice” was following a more health-conscious approach. It is true that I don’t need the additional calories anyway!😉 

Big Slice? What about the holes?!

However, I discovered that the enclosed slices were not what a remembered from my childhood. These were a lot closer to half slices and contained more than the average number of holes in them! I counted seven or more “cheese vacancies” (holes!) in most slices. I asked, “What is this?” and a thought came to me that this might be an example of Shrinkflation! This new word has been used to describe how both packing and product have been downsized. The product cost has increased, but the contents are shrinking! Thus, Shrinkflation!

It shouldn’t surprise us that manufacturers have found creative ways to fool us and to raise the price of our food items! It’s an age-old deception when the promise is greater than what is delivered! There is an old saying that brings a smile of wariness to many of us, “You can put lipstick on a pig, but it is still a pig!”

During this holiday season, many can fall victim to phone scam artists, unscrupulous telemarketers, misleading online ads, and fast-talking salespersons. During these days following national, state, and local elections, some of us have been desensitized and led astray by self-serving political types. These aren’t the only ones using nefarious tactics. Sadly, a few media purveyors of religious sounding ideas have gotten in on the act of deception. All in the name of raising revenue for their causes!

I am so glad that I choose to attend a church where God’s money is invested in local and global ministries. I know that when I give my tithes and offerings I can see the results, evidence, and impact of where that money is at work to change lives and improve circumstances. We are blessed to receive regular updates and communications in both words and pictures that detail the impact of our church family’s generosity.

We have entered a frenzied season of buying and gifting. There is a need to be vigilant and discerning in our approach to Christian spending. Christian consumers should live within our means and budgets. When dealing with this heightened sense of materialism at Christmastime, here’s a word of caution from the Lord, “Stay alert. This is hazardous work I’m assigning you. You’re going to be like sheep running through a wolf pack, so don’t call attention to yourselves. Be as shrewd as a snake, inoffensive as a dove.” (Matthew 10:16, MSG).

It may take shrewd discernment and harmless engagement to get us safely through this season!

Mike Keppler, retired pastor,

active churchman and
doting grandparent.
Contact: drmjkeppler@gmail.com


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