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I have just bought a packet of Thompson and Morgan seeds ( Beetroot Boltardy), and happened to notice that the packet contained 350 seeds, whereas last year the identical packet contained 400, and both are priced at £1.99 - effectively a 12.5 per cent increase in price.
I haven't bothered ( yet ) to compare other seed packets, but wonder whether other members of this forum have seen similar sneaky increases?
It annoys me, not so much because of the price rise, but because as an allotment holder I get used to packets of seed being enough to give me a full row, or only half a row, and it's annoying to think that a packet of seeds such as these Beetroot, would have perhaps given me two rows last year, but only one and a half this.
It's not just T & M - most big companies seem to treat us like idiots - just put the price up if you feel it totally necessary
Don't get me started! A packet of Brussell sprout seeds in Homebase last week; £3.30: I SIMPLY DON'T BELIEVE IT (now...where have I heard that phrase before?)
Last year T&M were selling dwarf sunflowers £2.49 for 10 seeds! Rip off Britain!
I subscribe to a weekly gardening mag which works out a £1 a week (discount price for subscription) and you get a free packet of seeds. OK, you cant choose the seeds, but hey! I'll grow anything if it's free! Also go around your local DIY store and dead head a few flowers. Dry them off and hey presto! free seeds!
It works out much better value for money to buy magazines such as Grow Your Own or Kitchen Garden and get the free seeds that come with those. I haven't had to buy any beetroot seeds for this year
I have noticed that Urwins prices are very much increased ,I think £1.99 is far too much for a pkt of seeds,some cheaper ones do as well like the ones at B+Q but you don't get the variety.All the more important to collect seed if you can.
I'm sorry to say it but all retailers of whatever you buy are doing the same thing, from chocolate bars to groceries to fags, all the manufacturers and producers are reducing the size or quantity of whatever we buy and charging the same price for it.
It's a reaction to how price conscious everybody has become since the recession.
If everybody actually checked the size/weight/average contents of whatever you buy, you will see we are getting less for our money now than ever before.
For the smokers I came across a producer who was selling gigs not in 20's but 19's and saying they were cheaper! A distinct con as there was no real printing on the packet to say it was only 19 instead of 20. A clear breach of the law.
In fact all the major supermarkets are doing the same thing, and very subtle about it too.
Advertising great value, but selling less in the packet. Some supermarkets have moved good selling lines into their luxury ranges, even thought they are the same products as were sold 6 months ago at a slightly lower price, and charging more for it.
Being price conscious does pay dividends by using the so called no frills stores(aldi,Lidl, poundland to name a few), but even they are at it.
We do have a choice, pay more or shop smart and use seed swaps or plant swaps as everyone normally buys too much seed, and we all have plants we can take cutting from or divide, and for the cost of a stamp it makes sense. Local plant swap groups can be set up, allotment members can club together.
We don't have to put up with these rather underhand selling tactics, we just have to be smarter in how we go about buying.
The rise of the no frills stores is evidence that we are getting better at it.
If we want to pay even less, then we need to get even better at what some are doing already.
Try Pound land or Wilkinsons for value packs of seeds or 3 for 2 offers.
Wilkinsons are great for basic veg seeds