Blog: Dean BestAussie ice-cream lovers have a Pop at Unilever

Dean Best | 18 March 2010

The belief that our favourite treats get smaller over time is a familiar grumble among consumers - especially when there is little sign of smaller prices.

Unilever is the latest company to be faced with complaints that its products have shrunk in size.

Consumers in Australia have lashed out at Unilever for reducing the size of Paddle Pop ice creams and for not cutting the price of the product accordingly.

Unilever, which quietly introduced the changes months ago, said only the ice creams on sale in c-stores and service stations were made smaller - those on sale in supermarkets were unchanged.

However, the company also revealed that the smaller ice creams were introduced to meet "strict" guidelines on the food sold in schools.

"These Paddle Pops are now approximately 20% lower in fat than the previous product, while continuing to deliver other nutritional benefits such as being low GI, portion-controlled, and a source of calcium," a spokesperson insisted.

"Paddle Pops continue to be one of the most affordable dairy snacks available - and the changes we’ve made mean that we’re now able to offer both parents and children a healthier, portion-controlled product at the same price."

Nevertheless, consumers in Australia remain put out (as some of these comments in the Herald-Sun illustrate) and Unilever, like many a food manufacturer before it, have found out just how vigilant and well-informed consumers are in this digital age.


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