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Customers feel the pinch

As many in the community and across the country deal with surging food and gas prices while making ends meet, one company has been able to keep their product the same price regardless of inflation. For over 30 years, Arizona Beverages super sized cans have remain at $1.29 CAD.

 As many in the community and across the country deal with surging food and gas prices while making ends meet, one company has been able to keep their product the same price regardless of inflation.

For over 30 years, Arizona Beverages super sized 23-ounce iced tea can has been a convenience store standard for decades in the US at 99 cents and in Canadian stores at $1.29.

Last month fake news reports spread across the internet that the beverage company would be hiking prices by 30 cents.

It's only iced tea, but to many it seemed to be the final straw in a steady economic slump and overall global outlook. To many, the rise in price of a shelf-favourite beverage seemed to bring the war in Ukraine, political upheavals and financial landslides closer to home. The news — fake that it was — created a landslide of response across the Internet.

In reality, the family-run business had been trying to amplify their own narrative — one that said they were doing all they could to keep the pricing as it had been. Company spokespeople said they had made innovations to keep costs the same by reducing the amount of aluminium used to make the cans.

“If you keep doing those things, you can kind of offset costs and rising costs, and get the consumer value and the ability to buy your product and everybody’s happy,” said Arizona Beverages co-founder Don Vultaggio during an interview in April on the Today Show.

But that didn’t stop the internet from running rampant with the idea that prices were going up.

Why does the price of a can of iced tea have rippled effects with Lakeland This Week readers? Good question.

The answer is that is has to do with the food insecurities we are all facing. Sticker price shock, supply, demand, uncertainties of hidden taxes, tariffs and transport costs ... they all are making any consumer purchases a hard drink to swallow these days.

Spilling the tea on the internet with opinion-based, factless commentary does little to help many small companies that are truly trying to help their customers.



About the Author: Rahma Dalmar

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