Tag Archives: proctor & gamble

Lame Adventure 179: Insult in a Tube

A creature of habit, I have brushed my teeth at least twice daily ever since early childhood.  My brother, Axel, liked to say that I shot off my mouth so much, I must have brushed with gunpowder.  When I was a small fry, my toothpaste of choice was my mother’s, Crest.  In my teen years I switched to Colgate because Axel bought into the myth that Crest’s parent company, Proctor & Gamble, was linked to the Church of Satan due to a controversy surrounding P&G’s former logo.

Devil worshipper logo?

Looking back I now think that links to the devil would have inspired heathens like Axel and I to not only continue brushing with Crest but to purchase P&G stock.  In the early 2000’s I went granola and switched to Tom’s of Maine because my then dentist, when I had dental coverage, suggested it would help me hang onto my remaining natural teeth longer.  It has thus far.

Unfortunately, in 2006, 84% of Tom’s was bought out by Colgate-Palmolive to the tune of $100,000,000 and it’s been downhill ever since as they scramble to make massive profits.  Once Tom’s was taken over by this corporate behemoth, the packaging has gotten flashier but the product within has been steadily shrinking.  What used to be a 6-ounce tube was gradually reduced to 5.5 ounces.

The good old days of Toms ... February 2011.

Much to my horror, when I went to the store on Monday to buy my most recent tube of Tom’s the packaging had shrunk an additional  8/10 of an ounce to a paltry 4.7 ounces.

The incredible shrinking toothpaste.

At this rate of 1.5-ounce reduction every three years, a tube of Tom’s should be reduced to approximately a .2-ounce size by the year 2020.  The approximate $5 price per tube continues to hold steady.  How considerate.

One of corporate America’s favorite ways to bitch-slap the consumer is to repackage less product for the same price, so the allegedly unknowing spending fool is paying more for less as the fat cats in charge just get fatter.  Tom’s spins itself as being a healthier product that’s good for both the user and the environment, even though since it was taken over by a cluster of greedy suits in a boardroom, it is now one of the biggest poster children representing the worst of transparent corporate greed.  The board of directors at Tom’s may not worship Satan, but they’re influenced by a far worse devil that’s forever ripping off the consumer and making record profits, big oil.

Tom’s web site boasts a ten-page “Find Answers” section where they discuss everything from if the stock is publicly traded to does the new tube signal a formula change.  Nowhere is the question addressed about why the product is continually shrinking but it still costs the same.  Therefore, I have taken it upon myself to ask and answer this question with Tom’s mint-flavored spin.

Why do you keep decreasing your tube size and not your price?

Our decreased tube size gave us the opportunity to improve the amount of space inside our recycled cardboard box to better meet our consumer needs!  The toothpaste inside all of our decreased tubes still delivers the same great brushing experience you have come to expect from Tom’s of Maine.  Nothing else in the formula has changed, just the size.  Enjoy less as you pay more you tree hugging sucker.

A tool of corporate greed, Sheryl Crow. My hero(ine), Patti Smith, probably would have told them to perch on it had they asked her.