This is a 2-fer Thursday – 2 posts for the price of one. We won’t have these every week, but every now and then, I’ll do one. After you read this article, scroll down to read the Sporting News post.

I was startled the other night when I realized that my box of corn dogs contained only five dogs. In the past, it had always contained six. Since I am in the habit of eating three corn dogs at once, this was a traumatic turn of events.

All across the consumer landscape, changes are afoot. The manufacturers are in a difficult position. On one hand, many of them are seeing steep increases in costs. On the other hand, they are hesitant to raise prices in this economy and lose customers to competitors who don’t change prices.

Caught in this bind, the companies have gotten creative. Many companies are retaining the same physical dimensions of the package, but reducing the quantity of the product. It’s not just corn dogs, either. Grab your jar of peanut better and flip it upside down. See that – the bottom is concave! Fun size candy bars? They have gotten even smaller – many of them are narrower than they have been in the past.

Even the Girl Scouts have are going this – you’re getting one less ounce in your box of cookies. Pay attention to the food you’re buying and you’ll see other examples of content downsizing.

Some people might shrug this off and see it as an effective involuntary weight loss program. Not me – I’m a thin person and I need my food to make sure I don’t blow away in the wind.

Companies – if you need to raise the price, raise the price. An extra fifty cents in the grocery store will be a lot less annoying to me that noticing one fewer corn dog when I open the box.

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Kosmo is the founder of The Soap Boxers and writes on a variety of topics. Many of his short stories have been collected into Kindle books.

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