I’m livid, I won’t lie. Not at the social injustice of a co-worker being turned away from winning a PrettyLittleThing competition on the grounds of being male (as ridiculous as that is), but at the news that Freddos, historically one of my favourite after-school treats, are to have a price-hike to 30p. 30 whole pence for a small piece of bug-eyed, jolly looking chocolate.
Mondelez, producer of the Freddo, have already been embroiled in a cost-cutting scandal surrounding the reshaping of a beloved Christmas standard, the enormous bar of Toblerone, at the end of last year. Now they plan on making me and you pay the same amount of money for a mouthful of chocolate as I did 3 weeks ago for a “reduced to clear” loaf of Warburtons sliced white.
It’s become a standard in conversation about the olden days to say, “I remember when Freddos were 10p”, to which the standard retort is “10p? I remember when they were 5p!”. As sure as the sun rises, this conversation occurs. In the same way that it’s impossible to describe something as “like Marmite”, without following it up with “you either love it or your hate it”. It will now be a more effective representation than ever of how prices have changed, even since the turn of the Millennium.
The price of a Freddo has seen a higher percentage increase in price since 2000 than the Big Mac, the average cinema ticket, and Inflation itself. I’m finding it hard to believe that a child with £1 can no longer pop into their local newsagent and fetch him/herself 5 Freddos (it was best to buy enough to be satisfied, but not so many as to draw strange looks) and walk out with 50p. Now they walk in, buy 5 Freddos and walk out with a 50p debt to the shopkeeper.
This is a sorry state of affairs. It’s unlikely that I’ll ever eat a Freddo again, although that’s mostly down to being 24 years old rather than the price. Nevertheless, I stand aghast at the thought of paying 30p for such a small sliver of chocolate, insulted even that Mondelez expects people to continue to pay it. The problem is that the next generation of youngsters just won’t know! They’ll be so uninformed about the dramatic 17 year price-rise that they’ll think they’re getting a bargain at 30p compared to the £4 they have to pay to get a bag of minstrels for instance.
I don’t know, maybe I’m just becoming more old and crotchety…but it’s just not right is it? Just like the Toblerone thing. It won’t end the world, but it’s annoying isn’t it?