Saturday, June 13, 2009


Coles loses a customer miffed at its limited product range and failure to post unit prices. These problems are easily solved: visit the shops offering the products you want and use your phone's calculator to figure unit prices. Overcoming such insignificant troubles is actually easier than complaining about them. Some people just live to complain, I guess.

Update: Unit pricing is convenient for shoppers but is not without costs, real and possible. Coles has committed to introduce unit pricing at a cost of $10 million. Many times that amount would be spent introducing the scheme at all retail grocery outlets Australia-wide. This will ultimately be paid for by grocery shoppers.

Unit pricing might encourage retailers to raise prices on cheaper products. If, for example, unit pricing reveals two competing products to have prices of say 75¢ and 90¢, retailers will be tempted to narrow the differential by raising the price of the cheaper product. Shoppers will still save by buying the cheaper product but the retailer will actually make more than before.

It has been proposed that a mechanism be established to monitor this possible effect of unit pricing. This isn't going be cheap.

In tangentially related news, the UK government is considering scrapping "best before" food dating to help reduce needless waste:
“Too many of us are putting things in the bin simply because we’re not sure, we’re confused by the label, or we’re just playing safe,” Hilary Benn, the UK’s Environment Secretary, said.
"Best before" food dates have to be a huge money maker for food manufacturers with perfectly good products thrown in the bin to be replaced with new. Consumers also pay the costs associated with the "best before" labeling, which is effectively meaningless in any event.

Update II: A cook-it-yourself penny-pinching tip:
The great thing about a broth is you can use a cheap cut of meat that you usually wouldn't feed to the dogs...
The very next post revealing the possible downside of eating dog-quality food:
... last week I had a stomach bug all week ...
Probably a virus.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

He has a lot to say about commerce for a commie.

8:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jewemy has brought endless whining to an art form.

5:18 AM  
Anonymous ar said...

I once enjoyed the mental challenges of working our whether buying 175g toothpaste was cheaper per gram than buying the 140g tube. (Usually not, shoppers!) But that's all finished. Now my brain is atrophied to the point where I will consider watching 2 1/2 Men. Maybe I should switch to Coles?

7:41 AM  
Anonymous nic said...

It's all Bolt's fault, and Blair too! They shop at Coles and are puppets for big business /sarc.

9:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have no idea where he shops, but both my local coles in melbourne have unit pricing. It may be that coles is rolling it out progressively.

9:25 AM  
Anonymous ARIII said...

It seems the dog has better taste in food then the kejster and her 'neenish tart'.

12:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mandatory unit pricing (soon to be introduced by this economically illiterate government) will have the unintended effect of reducing competition. Such a policy has high fixed and administration costs which favour large chains (like Coles and Woolies) at the expense of smaller, independent stores who will have to bear disproportionately higher costs.

2:08 PM  

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