Walmart shoppers are exposing kraft mac and cheese for shrinkflation

@stephyparker123/TikTok Shawn Konopaski/ShutterStock (Licensed)

‘I never used to be able to finish a full box on my own’: Walmart shoppers are exposing Kraft Mac and Cheese for ‘shrinkflation’

'We used to feed a family of four...with one box.'


Braden Bjella


Posted on Dec 3, 2023   Updated on Dec 8, 2023, 3:33 pm CST

At a time when grocery prices are increasing, shoppers are noticing that they’re getting less for their dollar than ever before—even while buying the same products.

This is a phenomenon called “shrinkflation,” a term used to describe products staying the same price or increasing in price while reducing the actual amount of product they give you.

Numerous examples of this have gone viral and sparked discussion over the years on TikTok. One user showed how Betty Crocker reduced the size of their cake mix; another showed how the weight of sauce in a frozen meal was being counted toward the overall weight, leading to a reduction in product. A further TikToker showed himself opening a personal-sized bag of Doritos—only to discover it had just five chips.

Now, some shoppers are calling out Kraft for reducing the size of its Kraft Dinner, often called simply Kraft Mac and Cheese in the U.S.

In several videos, shoppers have noted that the size of their normal Kraft Dinner box is decreasing.

@stephyparker123 @KD Canada explain yourselves 😤 I need the full 200 grams of macaroni #inflation #canada #conspiracy #fyp #ontario #whatisthis ♬ original sound – Stephanie

TikTok user Stephanie (@stephyparker123) discovered that a crate of Extra Creamy Kraft Dinner contained boxes with two different weights, despite all appearing to be the same size.

“200, 175, 200,” she says, reading off the boxes’ weight in grams. In the caption, she adds, “@KD Canada explain yourselves…I need the full 200 grams of macaroni.”

Another TikTok user, Carley (@carley_larley), came to the same conclusion while looking at the original flavor.

@carley_larley Enough is enough. #shrinkflation #inflation #shrinkflationisreal #ripoff #grocery #stopshrinkflation ♬ original sound – Carley

“What in the shrinky-dink is going on around here?” she asks. “This is getting ridiculous.”

“A week and a half to two weeks ago-ish I bought this from Walmart. 225 grams, ‘kay?” she continues. She then points to the listed weight of 200 grams on a second box. “Today, I bought this box for the same price.”

In the comments section of both videos, users complained about shrinkflation.

“JUST said this to my wife last week when we split a box and felt like it wasn’t as much in it!” exclaimed a commenter. “Also used to be like .39 cents a box only 5 years ago.”

“We used to feed a family of four, fullllll bowls, with one box,” recalled another.

“And they’d already shrunk before. doesn’t fill the bowl anymore,” shared a third. “I feel less guilty downing the whole box though.”

The Daily Dot reached out to Stephanie via Instagram direct message, Carley via TIkTok direct message, Kraft via email, and Walmart Canada via Media Relations Contact Form.

Update 8:04am CT Dec. 5: In an email to the Daily Dot, a Kraft Heinz spokesperson shared the following:

“The food industry continues to navigate inflationary pressures across ingredients, labor, and transportation, and Kraft Heinz is not exempt from these pressures. As a result of increased production costs, we have reduced the total volume of grams per packaged box for Kraft Dinner and updated the packaging to reflect this change. Our goal is always to offer quality products at an affordable price, and we are diligently seeking efficiencies across our business to provide more value to consumers across income levels.”

Update Dec. 8, 2023, 3:33pm CT:

In an Instagram direct message exchange with the Daily Dot, Stephanie shared her thoughts on shrinkflation.

“It’s terrible,” she wrote. “It’s yet another thing that big corporations think they can get away with, and they do, because as long as people are buying it, they’ll keep doing it. And it’s not just Kraft; we’d have to boycott all of the major companies at this point which would be unheard of on a large enough scale to make a difference.”

“So there’s no way to change it without creating some kind of legislation to force transparency on quantity changes,” she continued. “That way the quantity reduction is at least noticeable to consumers.”

As for Kraft’s explanation about rising costs, Stephanie says she’s not buying it.

“Sounds like more corporate greed,” she stated. “As if ‘increased production costs’ are forcing them to reduce quantities. I’m sure they make more than enough money to keep the quantity the same. They’d rather rip off their customers in this terrible economy than make a fraction less revenue.”

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*First Published: Dec 3, 2023, 3:00 pm CST