It is sad to see the demise of a once great brand. It is even sadder when the demise is self-inflicted. And, as is often the case, this time it was caused by a focus on cost not the value of what the customer was buying.
To be fair, as is often the case, this product was bought for two likely purposes: to support the organization and for the taste. I am talking here about Girl Scout Cookies and most specifically Do-si-dos, or Peanut Butter Sandwich cookies.
I have been a strong supporter of the Girl Scout Cookie drive for decades. When my neighborhood only had one Girl Scout, she got the orders. When more came, I split them, but the girls knew I was likely their best customer as the minimum order for each was one case. (Come on, they must last a year).
My favorite became the peanut butter sandwich cookie. I loved them. Several years ago, the Girl Scouts changed the bakers they were using for the cookies to save money; and the quality/taste of the peanut butter sandwich cookies have deteriorated. Further, they offer two names for the “same” cookie depending on whether the baker is East Coast or West Coast. And the cookies are materially different, and both are very poor imitations of the original.
As I live in the West Coast area, I get the “Peanut Butter Sandwich” named cookie. It has become marginal at best and I don’t plan to buy them anymore. I got a chance to buy the Do-si-do named cookie by contacting the Girl Scouts of America and they connected me with a troop in the East. The problem was I had to also paying shipping which does not support the Girl Scouts but does make the cookies more expensive.
While these were also a poor imitation of the original, they were materially better than the West Coast version. Thus, not only has quality taken a dive, but there is no consistency either. While you can argue that they have different names and people are unlikely to get both, this is further damaging to the brand.
I am very sorry to say that I am likely a former customer for the Girl Scouts and I suspect I am not alone. Perhaps the increased profit they make on the cheaper cookies offsets the loss of customers, or more likely, they have no idea what is happening and why sales may be declining.
But too many companies know the cost of everything and the value of nothing.