Ticonderoga use to be the gold standard in pencils!!! I LOVED them even if they were more expensive than other brands. However, over the past couple years I've noticed the quality going down hill. At first I thought...maybe it is just a bad batch/box. Then this year, I have several boxes from different stores and different parts of middle Tennessee. I sharped them with two different electric sharpeners & three different hand held sharpeners. The wood was mushy, the lead was broken up in side them, and some were off centered. UGH! I posted this on social media and found I was not the only one having this struggle. Ticonderoga...COME ON!!! You all are who we go to....don't let us down!