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Now canned tuna has downsized

rworange May 18, 2009 05:23 PM

If you have any recipes, be aware that at least Bumble Bee chunk light tuna is now a 5 oz can.

I've been counting calories and was punching info into spreadsheets and noticed the change. I thought the cans were looking a little slimmer lately.

It seems like instead of ticking off consumers and ruining long-time recipes ... it may be time to switch to the metric system. Then they could easily disguise picking customers pockets. Most people would be too confused by the change to figure out they are paying more for less.

What next? One damn less sardine in a can?

  1. a
    adamshoe May 18, 2009 05:57 PM

    On the upside RW, Just came back from a (San Leandro) Costco run and guess what? Chicken of the Sea is touting their 7oz.(!!!!) tuna cans. Imagine that... the same size they used to be way-y-y back when. Same thing for the Kirkland tuna; I think it was 7 oz., too. I was so giddy that I forgot to check the price, since I already have some good ol' TJ's tuna @ home (6 1/2 oz... I think) I just wish they'd sell a tuna packed in olive oil since it's so much more tasty that way. 5 oz. of tuna is barely enough for one sandwich, let alone two.
    But we've hashed this topic to death re: the grocery store shrink-ray!!! adam

    11 Replies
    1. re: adamshoe
      w
      winedude May 19, 2009 10:55 AM

      Yup, they have them in 7 oz cans, but they're about 50% more expensive then the 6 oz cans were about a month ago. I hate this.

      1. re: adamshoe
        Chuckles the Clone May 19, 2009 11:52 AM

        Weight includes the packing water. So who knows what you're
        getting in comparison to whatever it was you used to be getting.

        1. re: Chuckles the Clone
          rworange May 19, 2009 12:45 PM

          That is true. Unfortunately I don't remember the brand ... it was one of the big brands ... but I opened it up and only 1/3 of the can was tuna. As far as the new 5oz BB can, 1 oz is water, so there's 4 oz tuna in reality.

          1. re: Chuckles the Clone
            Ruth Lafler May 23, 2009 05:43 PM

            Not true. The packing liquid is not counted in the weight for canned goods. At least, not if it gives the weight as "Net weight."

            I suspect that what RW is seeing is that they didn't downsize the can as much as the amount of tuna, so there's more packing liquid in the can. If they reduce the amount of tuna 18 percent (6 oz. to 5 oz.) but they only reduce the size of the can 10 percent (so that it doesn't look obviously smaller) there's going to be more liquid in the can.

            1. re: Ruth Lafler
              Chuckles the Clone May 23, 2009 05:59 PM

              That's "drained weight". Net weight includes everything except the can. And there does not appear to be a standard governing the relation between net and drained weights.

              1. re: Chuckles the Clone
                k
                kayEx May 23, 2009 06:39 PM

                I happened to have noticed the smaller can today. Counting Calories as well to make sure I can enjoy my desserts all summer, hehe. The can contents after draining is 4 oz and I wondered the same thing. Plus I did not even do a thorough squeeze drain which may crush me if I do and I find out my now 5 oz can of tuna is really 3.5 ounces.

                1. re: Chuckles the Clone
                  Ruth Lafler May 23, 2009 08:42 PM

                  Wow. I've had that wrong for years. Even more reason to buy unprocessed foods!

                  1. re: Ruth Lafler
                    Chuckles the Clone May 23, 2009 09:07 PM

                    Me too; had it wrong until about a year ago when I bought big package of cans in an apparently good deal at costco, opened one, did the same "wtf?" that's going on here, and sent off a few polite (heh) letters of inquiry to the chicken of the sea folks.

                2. re: Ruth Lafler
                  rworange May 23, 2009 07:34 PM

                  On the tuna with a lot of water and 1/3 tuna, can't say what the can said because I didn't look. I just thought it was a mistake.

                  However, on the BB 5 oz can which I'm looking at

                  The front says Net Wt 5 oz

                  The Nutritional info says

                  Serv size 2 oz drained
                  Servings: about 2

                  I'm sure the 'about' doesn't mean you are getting more than 4 oz of tuna. Haven't opened one yet.

                  1. re: rworange
                    j
                    JDRMPrice Apr 2, 2010 08:36 AM

                    I just opened 3 cans of Chicken of the Sea Tuna. Cans said 5 oz. NET WGT. After draining the cans, I weighted each on. #1 can: 2.8 oz of tuna; #2 can 2.7 oz and #3 can 2.3 oz. I weighed all the cans of tuna I have in my cupboard. They all weighed different, ranging from 5.8 oz to 6.3 oz. ANd the serving size said 2 oz drained (just like rw says above. But the 2.3 and 2.8 oz does not compute to 2 servings. When I first met my husband, I would put a thin layer of meat in his sandwich. He complained that he couldn't taste the meat. I guess now, he won't have a choice unless I make the can of tuna into 1 serving and not 2. The public is really getting screwed. More money for than product and less than what it says! I would like to contact Bumble Bee and Chicken of the Sea, but they both have addresses to contact them and no phone number. They probably wouldn't answer anyway.

                    1. re: JDRMPrice
                      Midlife Apr 2, 2010 12:00 PM

                      Well.................. it would seem pretty CS :o) of Chicken of the Sea to expect that anyone would include the water in a serving of canned tuna. Unfortunately, I think the law would allow them to include the water in the net weight calculation anyway.

                      Somewhere above I gave my rec for Kirkland water-packed tuna at Costco as seeming to have more tuna in the can, and at a good price.

            2. chef chicklet May 19, 2009 12:06 PM

              That explains it. I was noticing that the three cans I opened and made tuna salad with made about the same as two cans.

              Thanks for letting us know. The better buy might be the larger can at this point, or depending on the sale...

              1. Caroline1 May 19, 2009 12:36 PM

                That's okay. A "quart" (32 oz) of Hellmann's Mayonnaise now only contains 30 ounces, so maybe you can still get the same number of tuna salads with the two of them, just not as many calories.

                I don't know about you guys, but I'd much rather see a price increase on the quantities I'm used to than have the price stay the same while the quantity dwindles. The math gets sooooooooo much more complicated when a "quart" is no longer a quart! <sigh> When I run the world, things will be better.

                4 Replies
                1. re: Caroline1
                  GretchenS May 21, 2009 01:49 PM

                  Caroline1, when can you start???

                  1. re: GretchenS
                    Caroline1 May 21, 2009 02:18 PM

                    How long do you think you need to convince the rest of the world that I'm their best hope? I'm ready! '-)

                    Caroline

                  2. re: Caroline1
                    chef chicklet May 23, 2009 03:25 PM

                    I'm with you, I checked my (3) jars of Best Food mayonnaise and you're right.
                    Ok I guess I sort of understand their reasoning, because of (bottom line) oil prices cost must go up. But what is the thought process behind making smaller jars, etc? You would think their marketing would want to some how give the consumer the idea that they're getting more for their money by purchasing their product. Regardless, I would also rather be charged more, and spare my poor brain from trying to figure out their schemes.

                    We first this product package shrinkage with the detergent containers, however there were a lot promises for better cleaning, eco friendly detergent, etc., and so it was reasonalble to a certain degree. But what can they rationalize with mayonnaise and tuna? Maybe they want to help us all to diet. Keep this up, and it could work!

                    1. re: chef chicklet
                      Chuckles the Clone May 23, 2009 05:21 PM

                      By reducing the size, they increase the frequency you will visit the store to buy more. If prices are going up, this benefits the producer, rather than the consumer. As a consumer, you want to stockpile at the lower price. As a producer, you want to sell as much as possible at the current price -- the ideal situation for a producer in a rapidly rising market would be to sell mayo in single-servings and one per customer per day.

                      When prices are going down, it's reversed; consumers should buy the smallest amount necessary.

                  3. DanaB May 21, 2009 02:30 PM

                    I noticed this recently, and decided that I'm just going to buy my tuna at Trader Joe's. The quality is better and it's still a 6 oz can.

                    6 Replies
                    1. re: DanaB
                      Kajikit May 21, 2009 03:29 PM

                      I don't know about tuna (I almost never eat it) but Kraft's pulled a swifty on their cheese... I went to get some on the weekend because it was on sale and I thought 'that packet looks extra-small'. Sure enough, all the reduced-fat cheeses are now in a 7oz bag. The change must have been so sudden that the sale labels on the shelf still said '8oz'!

                      1. re: DanaB
                        DanaB Jul 22, 2009 02:11 PM

                        Update: as of the can of tuna I opened today, Trader Joe's tuna is now 5 oz as well. I usually have a little bit of tuna salad left over when I make a sandwich, and this time I didn't and it made me go, "HMMM." Checked the can, and sure enough, TJs has joined the shrinking tuna parade.

                        1. re: DanaB
                          v
                          Val Jul 23, 2009 09:04 AM

                          Whole Foods house brand 365 tuna is still 6 ounces...the solid white is still solid white, nice big chunks. $1.49 for a can, I know it's more expensive but I get what I want...and I can buy the salt-free version to boot!

                          1. re: Val
                            Chuckles the Clone Jul 23, 2009 10:09 AM

                            The "6 oz" on the can label has no relation to the actual weight of the tuna. You need to drain the fish and then weigh it. And keep track of the results over time to see if they're playing games, replacing tuna with water.

                            1. re: Val
                              l
                              LeeLeeK Aug 23, 2009 01:15 PM

                              Hi Val,
                              Actually the tuna I saw at Whole Foods, red can (without added salt) is now a whopping $1.79. They must be crazy. I am just north of Boston...I am going to complain to the WF regional manager.

                              1. re: LeeLeeK
                                v
                                Val Aug 23, 2009 02:37 PM

                                ARGH!!!! Haven't been there in weeks since WF CEO wrote a horrific op-ed piece in the WSJ *my opinion* on August 12th (told myself I was boycotting WF)...so don't know if the price has changed here also or not. Crikey...I really did like that tuna; white, firm and in large chunks, not the mush they sell in some other brands now.

                        2. Midlife May 21, 2009 04:05 PM

                          We've been buying Chicken-of-the-Sea (in water) at Costco for years and sampled their own Kirkland brand one day a few months ago. Lower price, tasted just as good, if not better. Got it home and found that their is really noticeably more tuna in the same size can.

                          1. s
                            sueatmo May 23, 2009 05:26 PM

                            I'm still buying chunk light Tongol Tuna in 6.125 oz cans. I think Tongol tuna is a little better than regular brand chunk light tuna.

                            1. greygarious Aug 12, 2009 12:48 PM

                              I bought a few 5.82 oz cans of Goya "tuna with sweet corn" because it was marked down to 50 cents. It contains corn and sweet peppers atop the tuna, and is packed in both oil and water with a slight amount of hot pepper. The chunk light tuna looks and tastes better than what's in the major brands lately. It looks to me like the net amount of tuna in the cans is about the same. It made a good tuna salad, with the addition of celery, onion, pickle, and mayo.

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: greygarious
                                alkapal Aug 14, 2009 06:44 AM

                                great deal, greygarious!

                                ~~~~~~~

                                from the fda labeling guidelines: http://www.fda.gov/Food/GuidanceCompl...

                                8. Is water or other packing medium included in determining the net quantity of contents in a food container?

                                Answer: The water or other liquid added to food in a container is usually included in the net quantity declared on a label.

                                Beans weigh 9 oz.
                                Water weighs 4 oz.
                                Sugar weighs 1 oz.
                                Net Weight 14 oz. (396 g
                                )In some cases where the packing medium is normally discarded, the drained weight is given (e.g., olives and mushrooms).

                                21 CFR 101.105(a).

                                ~~~~~~~
                                as far as i'm concerned, as long as the information on the label is accurate, i have no problem. if i open the product and don't like the contents, i return it and don't buy it again. manufacturers have no contract with me to maintain the same product at the same price in perpetuity. they have no obligation to re-tool their plants or packaging when they make slight adjustments in product -- other than telling me accurate information on that package.

                                so far as i know in america, the consumer is still king, meaning i have a choice. at the grocery store, "i'm the "decider." nobody is making me a victim or "picking my pockets." geesh, this is a topic that just keeps on giving, isn't it?

                                1. re: alkapal
                                  Chuckles the Clone Aug 14, 2009 09:05 AM

                                  The information on the label is there so that you have some idea of what you are getting -before- you exchange your money for it. Certainly, "I'll never buy that again," is a perfectly reasonable option. The reason for the misleading labeling is to fool you into buying it the first time. Given the number of people on earth, fooling every one of them once is a profitable strategy.

                                  Since something other than the primary product on the label is included in the net weight, the answer provided to the primary question, "how much of this tuna am I getting and is there a different brand which is a better value?" is highly inaccurate.

                                  Where is the controversy?

                              2. JerryMe Jan 9, 2010 12:30 PM

                                For what ever reason, I missed this thread and just noticed it at when SO recently purchased canned tuna and when I went to put it in the cupboard, noticed the difference from a can already on the shelf.

                                Seriously pissed me off. I might go check out TJ's for price, taste and size for future forays. Erg . . . . .I'm w/ Caroline1 - the "one can" directive is no longer true!

                                1. f
                                  FrankD Jan 9, 2010 06:55 PM

                                  I noticed recently, while comparing different brands, that tuna cans, in Canada at least, list both a "net weight", and a "drained weight". In this case, the net weight is 170 g, and the drained weight is 120 g (a little more than 4 oz).

                                  2 Replies
                                  1. re: FrankD
                                    v
                                    Val Jan 10, 2010 04:46 AM

                                    yo, FrankD, yes...it seems we have to do some math...my 6 ounce can of 365 Whole Foods white tuna says: "serving size=2 ounces, servings=about 2"...so there's only about 4 ounces of tuna in a 6 ounce can...the rest is water or oil, however you buy it. Canned salmon is a better buy and offers more Omega-3's...guess I need to wise up. (whining>>but I love tuna salad!!!! love it!!!)

                                    1. re: Val
                                      r
                                      redwun1969 Mar 22, 2011 05:57 AM

                                      By 1975, most were still between 6 1/2 and 7 ounces. In 1991, StarKist reduced it's can from 6 1/2 to 6 1/8 ounces. More recently, starting around 2008, and now 2011 most all have gone from around 6 ounces to mere 4 ounces. not even half way full in the can. pathetic

                                  2. greygarious Mar 22, 2011 07:13 AM

                                    Wait - it gets better :-/ A couple of weeks ago Star-Kist had a whole page in the weekly flyer for Market Basket, the lowest-priced supermarket chain in the Boston suburbs. First, I have noticed a new trend toward the flyer featuring a single brand name on an entire page, which seems somehow fishy (no pun intended) though I don't know why. More importantly, the top of the page listed good sale prices for the 5 oz cans - 5 for $5 for the solid white and 5 for $3 for the chunk light. But below that, a big "NEW" with the "gourmet choice" line of 4.5 oz cans at $1.25 each. "Compare and save" it says. Yeah, if you compare and then save by buying the 60-cent chunk light instead! Or, if you REALLY want to save, you can get the 4.5oz Star Kist Very Low Sodium chunk white or chunk light for $1.50 a can (normally $1.67). The 3-packs of 3oz cans are on sale for $2.50 (normally $2.99). I don't even want to think about the drained weight of a 3 oz. can..... I wonder what the "gourmet choice" is all about - less water, or less shredding, or perhaps tuna that actually tastes like tuna used to?

                                    5 Replies
                                    1. re: greygarious
                                      rworange Mar 22, 2011 07:54 AM

                                      The material to make cans must be cheaper than tuna as they probably have to use more cans to package the same amount of fish. If consumers aren't actively complaining about being mugged like this, you would think that environmentalists would raise some sort of complaint about the waste. People have to buy (and discard) more cans to get the same amount of tuna.

                                      My favorite new one is McCormick Spices. They have done the sleasiest slight of hand I have ever seen in the downsizing area.

                                      They have new spice jars ... totally different shape. On it is a bright green sticker with "New Price" and a check mark. Is the JAR less expensive ... a little. However, the new bottle is 25 grams where the old jar was 55 grams .

                                      So, yeah ... there's a new price all right, you are paying almost double at the 55 gram price and now there's the waste of buying two packages to get close to the same amount of spice.

                                      I had respect for McCormick in the past. That is gone now and it will never come back after this sleezy trick. Just reduce the size if you must. Don't try to make it look like the consumer is getting a bargain.

                                      1. re: rworange
                                        r
                                        redwun1969 Mar 22, 2011 08:16 AM

                                        cans are so flimsy too cant even get can opener to work on smaller edge and lid to pres tuna folds in on itself its so thin.

                                        1. re: redwun1969
                                          z
                                          Zylphia Mar 22, 2011 08:19 AM

                                          Hate to break it to you folks but this has been going on for several years with ALL food products. Check your cereal boxes for example. Manufacturers think people will get upset at higher prices but won't notice a few ounces shaved off the sizes of things. And for the most part, people DON'T notice until it gets pretty dramatic. Also, food prices are STILL going up. Smart shopping is more important than ever these days.

                                      2. re: greygarious
                                        greygarious Mar 29, 2011 02:53 PM

                                        I e-mailed Star-Kist about this a week ago. No reply thus far, so I doubt I will hear from them.

                                        1. re: greygarious
                                          greygarious Apr 2, 2011 01:15 PM

                                          No e-mail from them, but an envelope from Star-Kist arrived, with a form slip of paper thanking the customer for input. A few coupons, totaling $1.75, were enclosed but I'm not very likely to used them. Costco's Kirkland is more economical, and has far better taste and texture (which I mentioned in my complaint to S-K).

                                      3. alkapal Mar 22, 2011 08:52 AM

                                        for the life of me i cannot fathom why people think that food will always come in the same size cans and boxes. or that if the sizes stay the same that the prices should stay the same!

                                        honestly people, do you have a clue about economics? have you run a business? do you have any idea about the costs of putting that can of tuna on the shelf?

                                        payroll
                                        payroll taxes
                                        unemployment tax
                                        workers comp
                                        liability insurance
                                        health insurance
                                        transportation costs
                                        physical plant maintenance
                                        advertising
                                        pensions
                                        regulatory compliance
                                        ...to name a few!

                                        half the reason our country is in bad economic shape is the lack of understanding of economics and market forces. and if you're in the anti-market forces camp, just know that the laws of economics always work -- even when the state controls/distorts the market (look at the food availability -- and rampant scarcity -- in the former soviet union).

                                        your consumer decision-making helps shape the market in a free society. if you don't like a product, don't buy it -- buy a competitor's product, or make your own. that's what competition is about.

                                        24 Replies
                                        1. re: alkapal
                                          o
                                          Ottojr Mar 22, 2011 08:59 AM

                                          It's a pay more-get less world. That's just how folks are going to stay in business. Nobody likes it but there it is.

                                          1. re: Ottojr
                                            alkapal Mar 22, 2011 09:01 AM

                                            they're paying more to put out the product. they should absorb the cost so you don't have to pay more? why is that?

                                            1. re: alkapal
                                              rworange Mar 22, 2011 09:39 AM

                                              There have been endless topics about this subject.

                                              The point is NOT paying more for food. The point is companies thiniking so little of consumers that they can shave off a few ounces or grams and their customers won't notice.

                                              That was my orgiinal intent in this thread. To make people aware that a slight of can trick was going on.

                                              That is what makes me really annoyed with McCormick. Not only a shrinking spice bottle, but the attempt to make consumers think they are paying less while almost doubling the price.

                                              The consumer can decide what action to take after that ... whether it is writing to the company to complain, stop bying that brand or product ... because once one company does it, they all do ... or just eat the cost.

                                              This is only recently, in the last decade, this is happeing. This is important because container size was so consistant for so many years that recipes are based on a can of tuna or some other package size ... a 6 oz can of tuna, for example

                                              I do believe that Wall Street, not Main Street was the primary cause of our currrent economic problems ... and the shrinking package size can be tied to to Wall Street as well, IMO... bigger profits for profitable companies.

                                              Whatever anyone's personal thoughts are about the economy, it is irrelevvant.

                                              Just be aware of getting less and paying more. Choose to do what you want about that.

                                          2. re: alkapal
                                            greygarious Mar 22, 2011 09:03 AM

                                            Paying more doesn't bother me. Paying more for LESS does.

                                            1. re: greygarious
                                              alkapal Mar 22, 2011 09:13 AM

                                              grey, you know better than making that argument, now....i'm pretty sure you know that is specious. for x quantity, the price is ?. if my cost of manufacturing goes up, i can raise the price that entire amount, or i can raise the price less than my entire cost increase, but just give a little less product. that's reality. the consumer may not buy my brand anymore if i raise the price the entire amount of my cost increase. maybe the customer doesn't even want that entire amount, and would prefer a smaller serving if they didn't have to pay the full cost increase were i the manufacturer to leave the can size (or "x" ) alone.

                                              the actual cost of food is going up. subsidies distort the grains markets. the dollar is devaluing, because of "QE". consumers can make their choices. bad economic policies don't help consumers.

                                              1. re: alkapal
                                                rworange Mar 22, 2011 09:58 AM

                                                No, some of us don't consider that argument specious in the least.

                                                Again, whatever your personal opinion is about the manufacturer's dilema and projecting that onto the economy in general, it is irrelevent. That is just your guess.

                                                The point is for consumers to be aware of the decreasing size ... and that is a fact, not an opinion.

                                                1. re: rworange
                                                  alkapal Mar 22, 2011 12:21 PM

                                                  economic realities are not an opinion. and tell me how that argument that i made (above) is not countering a specious argument. these "thoughts" that i have put forward are not "personal thoughts, " but reality and recognized economics.

                                                  as to "guessing" about manufacturers' dilemmas, does that take much imagination?

                                                  1. re: alkapal
                                                    rworange Mar 22, 2011 12:27 PM

                                                    Everyone has their own perception of reality.

                                                    Can't argue with the fact that tuna cans are smaller these days.

                                                    1. re: alkapal
                                                      Ruth Lafler Mar 22, 2011 12:30 PM

                                                      It's specious because as you noted, "the consumer may not buy my brand anymore if i raise the price the entire amount of my cost increase." But as you also noted, you *have* raised the price the entire amount of the cost increase, you're just deceiving your customer about that fact by manipulating the unit size.

                                                      1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                        z
                                                        Zylphia Mar 22, 2011 03:21 PM

                                                        I understand cost increase and inflation and all of that. What I don't like is the deception where they attempt to fool us into thinking we are getting a better bargain for more money when in fact we are simply getting less for more money. Leave the sizes the same so shoppers are still able to consider how many servings they get per item. Raise the price as needed. THAT we understand.

                                                      2. re: alkapal
                                                        Rmis32 Mar 25, 2011 07:45 AM

                                                        I won't dispute the economics, but I do resent being put on a diet by the tuna industry. That 5 oz can doesn't quite satisfy for lunch.

                                                      3. re: rworange
                                                        westsidegal Apr 9, 2013 10:30 PM

                                                        actually, i was aware of it and liked it.
                                                        i knew that because of the world wide increase in tuna prices that either the can size would come down for the same price or the price would go up.
                                                        since, to me, the "old" sized can was enough to make 1 1/2 sandwiches, it was an awkward size.
                                                        now i have the perfect amount of tuna for one sandwich and don't have to dork around trying to use up the extra tuna that didn't get used.

                                                      4. re: alkapal
                                                        BobB Mar 24, 2011 07:09 AM

                                                        There are two aspects to this: one, costs are going up. Undeniable. So prices must rise. No argument there.

                                                        Two, shrinking package size. NOT inevitable, a choice - and pretty clearly an intentionally deceptive one - on the part of the manufacturers.

                                                        Personally, it only bothers me on products where servings per container matters. When they shrink the container for something like mustard or ketchup it doesn't affect how I prepare food, I just need to buy a new jar sooner. No problem.

                                                        But I used to be able to make tuna salad using one can and get two reasonable-sized sandwiches. Now I get two skimpy ones, or one and some leftovers, or one overstuffed one. THAT affects me adversely and I hold the bastards responsible.

                                                        It's even worse because they've ALL changed from 6 oz to 5. Whether this is due to active collusion or simply self defense (company A shrank their can, so company B looks more expensive if they charge the same price per ounce), I don't care - it sucks and I hate them for it.

                                                        1. re: BobB
                                                          z
                                                          Zylphia Mar 24, 2011 07:18 AM

                                                          Which is why I would prefer just raising the price and leaving the package size alone.

                                                          1. re: Zylphia
                                                            alkapal Mar 24, 2011 07:29 AM

                                                            get together a campaign to encourage the tuna manufacturers to evaluate the amount of waste from multiple cans being needed for one tuna salad.

                                                            1. re: alkapal
                                                              BobB Mar 24, 2011 07:49 AM

                                                              Yeah, that's a complaint they'd respond to - "I need to buy more cans of tuna now." ;-)

                                                              1. re: BobB
                                                                alkapal Mar 24, 2011 07:53 AM

                                                                well, some of these people are jumpin' on the "green" wagon....you never know.

                                                                1. re: alkapal
                                                                  z
                                                                  Zylphia Mar 24, 2011 08:35 AM

                                                                  Exactly what I was thinking!! Wasting all those resources (electricity, water, metal, etc) on too many cans!

                                                          2. re: BobB
                                                            rworange Mar 24, 2011 10:54 AM

                                                            >>> But I used to be able to make tuna salad using one can and get two reasonable-sized sandwiches. Now I get two skimpy ones, or one and some leftovers, or one overstuffed one. THAT affects me adversely and I hold the bastards responsible.

                                                            I could not have said it better.

                                                            1. re: rworange
                                                              c
                                                              cstr Mar 25, 2011 09:03 AM

                                                              After catching up on the recent postings, this confirms why I purchase based on the 'unit cost'.

                                                            2. re: BobB
                                                              f
                                                              ferret Mar 29, 2011 12:20 PM

                                                              Costco's Kirkland Albacore is still 7oz. And it's as good as any of the major labels (if not better).

                                                              1. re: ferret
                                                                BobB Mar 29, 2011 12:28 PM

                                                                No Costco here - I'm in the city. Besides, none of the majors compares in flavor to the Pastene Italian in oil that I use.

                                                                1. re: BobB
                                                                  f
                                                                  ferret Mar 29, 2011 12:59 PM

                                                                  Living in Chicago we have a city Costco in addition to the usual suburban locations.

                                                                  1. re: ferret
                                                                    BobB Mar 29, 2011 01:35 PM

                                                                    That's still too far for me to drive from Boston - even if I wanted mainstream tuna. ;-)

                                                      5. Rmis32 Mar 29, 2011 11:55 AM

                                                        The trend is widespread enough to have merited an article in the NY Times.

                                                        "With unemployment still high, companies in recent months have tried to camouflage price increases by selling their products in tiny and tinier packages."

                                                        http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/29/bus...

                                                        5 Replies
                                                        1. re: Rmis32
                                                          z
                                                          Zylphia Mar 29, 2011 12:28 PM

                                                          Exactly and I don't like how the companies try to fool us. Keep the same sizes and raise the price, because you are going to anyway!

                                                          1. re: Rmis32
                                                            Ruth Lafler Mar 29, 2011 01:57 PM

                                                            What that article didn't mention was how the cost of changing packaging figures in. That's what I find so odd if the goal is to save money. When I think about changing packaging there are design costs, as well as presumably some changes in the procedures and machinery used for the packaging. Is that cost really so trivial that it's cheaper to change packaging than to simply raise the price of the existing package?

                                                            1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                              m
                                                              magnolia Mar 30, 2011 11:44 AM

                                                              It's not just tuna. Try plain yogurt and sour cream. I understand that prices have to be raised, but why not just do it! A lot of my recipes call for the old standard of 8 ounces or 1 cup. I don't want to have to buy two 6-oz. cartons to get what I need. And what about 15-oz. packages instead of 1 pound...

                                                              1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                rworange Apr 4, 2011 10:28 PM

                                                                There's some ice cream company that has a commercial on the Miami tv channels that says something like, "What if shoe sizes were suddendly smaller" ... and gives a lot of examples like that about cutting the size of a product to save the manufacturer money.

                                                                Anyway, they still sell ice cream in a half gallon. Bravo for them. I jotted their name down somewhere because they deserive to be recognized.

                                                              2. re: Rmis32
                                                                o
                                                                oerdin Apr 9, 2013 10:06 PM

                                                                Even worse than the downsizing has been redefining what exactly "chunk white tuna" is. It used to be it was actual chunks of tuna, as the name implies, but now most canned tuna seems to be pureed mush made up mostly of oil or water and very little actual tuna fish in it much less a chunk of tuna. The only brands I've seen which still honestly give people whole bits of tuna (instead of just a collection of mush) is All American Tuna, which is the last canned tuna made in the USA, and Fortuna brand tuna from the Philippines.

                                                                All American Tuna is by far the best stuff I've found on the market (I bought it at Costco) but it is ~ three times the price of the mushy tunas largely because they're paying American wages instead of slave wages but the quality is great. If you absolutely have to buy the cheap tuna than go with Fortuna as they still have actual chunks of tuna in there instead of mush like the mass market brands.

                                                              3. westsidegal Apr 9, 2013 10:25 PM

                                                                <<picking customers pockets.>>

                                                                with the worldwide price of fish skyrocketing, it would have been extremely improbable that any company selling fish would not raise their price.

                                                                1. s
                                                                  seamunky Apr 10, 2013 12:16 AM

                                                                  Here is an interesting opinion piece posted on atuna.com (a tuna trade news website/blog).

                                                                  http://www.atuna.com/Opinions/my%20op...

                                                                  It is of the author's opinion that Walmart's market power has actually influenced Starkist and Chicken of the Sea.

                                                                  To summarize, Walmart's tuna includes hydrolyzed vegetable protein which he claims that just 2 grams can help boost water retention in the tuna meat by 20%. (I've never heard of this. I'm familiar with it as a flavor enhancer like MSG.) The major brands have been working with the US Tuna Foundation to push for limits on HVP. But although COS and SK were against the watery tuna shenanigans, they themselves were the ones canning the tuna for Walmart at their American Samoa canneries. To remain competitive, COS and SK have also changed their products. Why?

                                                                  The author concludes that the companies have pretty much given up on the small cans of tuna and are making an admittedly poor product in order to shift toward their newer products (mainly the ready-to-use foil pouches with no draining required) with the hopes that these products will seem more premium and a greater consumer value when compared to the watery canned tuna being shipped from Thailand and Philippines and when compared to their own crappy canned product.

                                                                  I'm not sure how much of the article is true, but I found it interesting. What I DO know is that there sure are lots of new tuna products in foil pouches (lemon pepper flavor, italian herb flavor, ready-mixed tuna salad, tuna lunch-to-go, tuna creations, etc

                                                                  )

                                                                  I'd love to hear others' thoughts.

                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                  1. re: seamunky
                                                                    n
                                                                    Nancy51 Jun 28, 2013 03:17 PM

                                                                    Whew! What a chore to sign-in just to make a reply!
                                                                    %$#x&$##
                                                                    At any rate I completely agree that the poor quality canned product is a purposeful ploy to drive consumers into the higher priced foil packs, and e-mailed that opinion to the StarKist Co. Got no reply, of course.
                                                                    Does anybody know how the class action suit is going, or went?

                                                                  2. s
                                                                    seamunky Apr 10, 2013 12:30 AM

                                                                    Wow, I just noticed the date of the original post. Oh well, for those interested, according to a class-action lawsuit filed February 2013, Starkist has been under-filling the cans also. Join the litigious fun to reclaim the 17.8% more tuna you're due.

                                                                    http://gotaclassaction.com/starkist-n...

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