Among dealers the sizes of packages of canned goods are designated by terms that refer to weight expressed in pounds. The common sizes or capacities are 1, 2, 2 1/2, 3, and 10 pounds, and are briefly designated as 1s, 2s, 2 1/2s, 3s, and 10s. Doubtless at some time in the past the packages contained the weight of food indicated by the numerals assigned to the cans. But keen competition and the demand for low-priced articles have gradually shrunk the capacity of the cans, while the descriptive numerals have remained unchanged. Thus a can known as No. 2 size may actually weigh 1 pound and 6 ounces. A No. 3 can generally weighs about 2 pounds and 8 ounces. A No. 10 can is above the average if it weighs 8 pounds.

It may be that no harm is done to distributors and large buyers when every one understands the situation and no one is deceived. But the average retail buyer not only has not this knowledge of conditions but does not even know whether he is buying by weight or measure. To him canned peas are graded as 25-cent cans, 22-cent cans, 20-cent cans and 18-cent cans. When he chooses the larger of two cans at the same price, he does not know whether it is the heavier can. If it is the heavier, he does not know until he opens it whether the extra weight is due to an excess of liquid, or solidity of pack, or excessive weight of tin can and solder. Such buying is of course absurdly extravagant.

Table XXVI. - Comparison of Quantity Value of Six Brands of Canned Tomatoes

Label of sample examined

Weight of can unopened i

Weight of empty can

Weight of total contents

Measure of liquid

Weight of solid fruit

Cost of can

Cost of one pound of solid fruit

Sample U

Extra fancy tomatoes. Contents guar-

Cents

anteed to weigh at least 2 lbs., 2 oz... .

2 lbs., 8 1/2 oz.

5 3/4 oz.

2 lbs., 23/4 oz.

15 1/4 oz.

1 lb., 3 1/2 oz.

15

.1216

Sample V

Extra fancy tomatoes ............

2 lbs., 8 oz.

6 oz.

2 lbs., 2 oz.

1 lb., 2 oz.

l Ib.

15

.15

Sample W

Hand packed .................

2 lbs., 121/2 oz.

51/2 oz.

2 lbs., 7 oz.

12 oz.

1 lb., 11 oz.

15

.088

Sample X

Fancy. Contents guaranteed 2 lbs., 2 oz.

2 lbs., 9l/2 oz.

6 oz.

2 lbs., 3 1/2 oz.

10 1/4 oz.

1 lb., 91/4 oz.

12

.0752

Sample Y

Hand packed. Guaranteed pure.

1 lb., 3 oz.

3 1/2 oz.

15 1/2 oz.

71/2oz.

8oz.

10

.20

Sample Z

N.Y. choice ..............................

2 lbs., 4 oz.

5 1/4 oz.

1 lb., 14 3/4 oz.

1 lb., 2 1/4 oz.

12 1/2 oz.

10

.128