Consumer Reports finds difficulties in some product packaging

Boxes, blister packs and fancy packaging can add up to a mountain of frustration.

Consumer Reports gets a raft of complaints about all sorts of packaging problems.

Opening a box of cereal shouldn't cause an "explosion," but Consumer Reports says that's just one of many "packaging gotchas."

"We literally get hundreds of letters, cards, emails, posts on our Facebook page from disgruntled consumers who are fed up with lousy packaging," said Tod Marks of Consumer Reports. "Several readers complained vehemently about the No-Touch Kitchen System from Lysol, saying it was basically impervious to every implement they could bring to the table."

Two Barbasol shaving cream cans are the same size, but one is 11 ounces and the other is 10. The company said in a statement "a slightly reduced product volume improved function."

Ivory Soap used to weigh four-and-a-half ounces, but now it's just four.

"They're keeping the price the same, but giving you less for your money. Well, gosh, that amounts to a price increase if you ask me," Marks said.

Then there's what Consumer Reports called the "Black Hole" -- packages that make products look bigger than they are.

For example, with a container of Velveeta Shells & Cheese, once you're done making it, less food is actually inside.

Nice! Apricots also had far less fruit than the size of the box.

"Companies spend roughly $130 billion a year on product packaging. Roughly seven percent of a product's cost is in the packaging. So it's coming out of manufacturer's pockets, and it's coming out of consumers' pockets," Marks said.

Consumer Reports contacted companies regarding the packaging complaints.

Lysol said scissors should be enough to open its soap dispenser.

Mattel had no comment.

Kraft said it leaves room for water in the Velveeta Shells & Cheese and that noodles expand.

Ivory said its half-ounce bar soap reduction is due to increased production costs.

Nice! Apricots said it would evaluate its product.

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