The French government have mandated that retailers must inform consumers when products have been reduced in size without a corresponding decrease in price, a move aimed at addressing the issue of shrinkflation.  

This requirement is set to take effect from 1 July 2024. 

As per the new rule, retailers must display notices for two months when goods such as food and detergents are downsized, resulting in higher unit prices. 

This transparency measure applies to large and medium-sized stores and must be placed near the affected products.  

It encompasses both national brand and private label products such as bottles of soda, packets of rice, and laundry detergent.  

However, prepackaged foodstuffs with variable quantities and items sold in bulk are exempt. 

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Shrinkflation, the practice of reducing product size while maintaining or increasing prices, has become a significant concern for consumers and governments as inflation has eroded purchasing power.  

French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire said: “The practice of shrinkflation is a scam! We are putting an end to it. I want to restore consumer confidence. And with trust comes transparency.  

“From July 1, it will be mandatory to indicate when a food product changes size. The indication must in particular specify the evolution of the price in relation to weight, so that the consumer knows the true evolution of the price. We are committed to it, we are doing it.” 

The decree comes as the issue of food prices escalated into a major political concern in France after food inflation reached a record 16% after suppliers’ and retailers’ annual price negotiations. 

In response, the government enacted legislation to advance this year’s negotiations and exerted pressure on companies to moderate price increases. 

Earlier this year, Carrefour ceased the sale of PepsiCo products at its stores in four EU countries over price hikes.