Safeway Math (Shallow Thoughts)

Akkana's Musings on Open Source, Science, and Nature.

Wed, 10 Oct 2007

Safeway Math

The local Safeway has an interesting exercise in applied consumer mathematics in the sugar aisle.

[sugar cube price comparison]

Sugar cubes come in two sizes. You can get a one-pound box for $1.68, or a two-pound box for $3.86. Of course, the larger size is always a better bargain, right?

Let's check that. 1.68 times two is ... carry the one ... $3.36. Compare to $3.86 for the two-pound box ... um, why exactly should anyone buy the two-pound box instead of two one-pound boxes?

But you don't even have to do the math yourself. Safeway has already calculated the price per ounce and helpfully provides shelf tags giving you the numbers:

[1 lb price] [2 lb price]

You might think this is a one-time oddity, but it's actually been the case for at least a year. In fact, several months ago the price premium for the 2 lb box over the 1 lb actually increased. I guess plenty of consumers are jumping at the chance to buy sugar cubes in the large economy size.

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[ 15:29 Oct 10, 2007    More humor | permalink to this entry ]