The price is right

In an increasingly price-conscious world, being able to compare prices of equivalent products in order to make an informed choice is a consumer right. But with the explosion of pre-packaged goods in different types of packaging and product sizes that has hit our shop shelves, making that choice is no easy task. To get around this, an ISO standard is being developed that aims to improve the way quantities are displayed.

The average retail store these days can sometimes feel like a jungle. Multiple types of packaging, different weights and volumes means comparing similar products on price can be a minefield. Unit pricing is one way that consumers can wade through the jungle by displaying the price of the product as a standard unit of measurement. A 250 ml carton of milk sold for USD 1, therefore, would be equivalent to a 1 l carton sold for USD 4. But unit pricing is not widespread, and where it exists, it is not always visible or consistent in terms of quantities used, making it ineffective.

The answer lies in harmonization. A new ISO project committee – ISO/PC 294 – has just been formed to develop a standard for unit pricing that will establish guidelines and principles of unit pricing, to make it accessible and useful for both retailers and consumers.

QSI America can contribute to the growth and development of its clients by offering training, auditing and certification services in order to fulfill their expectations.

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