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Marketplace Scratch Pad

I scream, you scream

Scott Jagow Mar 10, 2009

I love when rival companies go at each other. It reminds me that by god, capitalism is still practiced in this country. Ben and Jerry’s is taking to task a decision by Haagen-Dazs to shrink its 16 oz ice cream carton to 14 oz. Apparently, the economy’s gotten so bad, a pint isn’t a pint anymore.

On its website, Haagen-Dazs says the cost of its ingredients has increased by an average of 25%. Thus, the downsizing:

“This was a difficult decision. But we hope you’ll agree that our promise to never sacrifice the quality of our ice cream–what we put in as well as what we leave out–is what the Haagen-Dazs brand is all about. The carton may have changed slightly, but your Haagen-Dazs ice cream has not. You can count on that.”

To which Ben and Jerry’s responded on its website that “downsizing pints is downright wrong.”

“We understand that in today’s hard economic times businesses are feeling the pinch. We also understand that many of you are also feeling the same, and think now more than ever you deserve your full pint of ice cream… So, while our competitor may be experiencing a bit of shrinkage, rest assured that your Ben & Jerry’s will still be standing tall in the freezer.”

Ben and Jerry have some experience tweaking the competition. Mediapost points out a 1984 campaign in which Ben and Jerry’s took on the Pillsbury dough boy.

He’s 14 ounces, too, you know. At least, for now.

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