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A Rose by Any Other Name

Part of the art of marketing is in repackaging goods and reselling them in hundreds of different configurations. We pay more and more for things we could get cheaper in other forms.

Through advertising, marketing and product placement, retailers and companies play an elaborate game of smoke and mirrors in order to convince us to buy product variations. One fantastic example of this is the new trend towards 100 calories (or that range) candy bar variations.

On a recent shopping trip, I purchased a regular Coffee Crisp and a 100 calorie Coffee Crisp Single. I LOVE Coffee Crisp Bars. The singles were placed in an arrangement close to eye level, with all 100 calorie variations clustered together. The larger, obviously less favored bars were positioned lower and away from their lighter and “healthier” cousins.

The 100 calorie single weighs 19 grams and cost 89 cents where I purchased it. The standard Coffee Crisp weighs 50 grams and cost 99 cents. The standard Coffee Crisp is 260 calories. Now, let me show you a neat trick:

50 grams divided by 19 grams = 2.63

260 calories divided by 1000 calories = 2.60

The proportions are the same. We are paying about two and a half times as much money, for two and a half times LESS chocolate. Is there a reason why we can’t just divide the larger bar into smaller sections? No.

Truth be told, there are people who will eat an entire chocolate bar if they open it. For them, these smaller pieces can be a good compromise. However, if you can manage the willpower and want your chocolate fix, buy the larger one and divide it up. You get just as much satisfaction and all you lose is the packaging.