The jury’s still out. The verdict on Kashi hasn’t been handed down. Yet people are still ticked off about the deception by parent company, Kellogg.
What’s Kellogg going to do about this marketing nightmare?
How do you call a not-so-natural cereal product “natural” after the genetically modified genie was let out of the frankenfood bottle? Will they change the labels to reflect GMO ingredients or will they live up to their own perception of quality and remove GMOs from their cereals?
We’ll have to wait and see, but a quick look to the past will give us some idea of the integrity of these companies and how stupid they think consumers really are.
Some of you may be too young to remember, but this isn’t the first brouhaha over breakfast cereals. Back in the 80s there was a big consumer backlash about all the sugar in breakfast cereals. Kellogg’s, Post and many other companies couldn’t ignore it.
So, what did they do? In a fanfare of marketing hyperbole they removed the word “Sugar” from the names of their cereals, like that made all the difference in the world, and kept selling the same old sugary garbage.
To help enlighten the younger readers and to remind the older ones who might have forgotten, here are the 4 biggest “FAILS” in breakfast cereal makeovers – to date (we may have to add Kashi to the list someday).
#4 Kellogg’s Sugar Pops Became Corn Pops
I don’t think even Kellogg’s takes the nutritional value of Corn Pops seriously. Check out this commercial from 2009, starring their brand mascot, “Sweet Toothasaur.” It’s clear that Corn Pops will only satisfy a sweet tooth addiction (“gotta have my pops!”) – NOT your nutritional needs. And someone at Kellogg’s knows this or they wouldn’t have allowed a mascot called “Sweet Toothasaur.”
Corn Pops provides 10 grams of sugar, 125 mg sodium, 3 grams fiber, 1 gram protein and less than 1/3 of the daily value of vitamins and minerals per 1 cup serving.
Its ingredients are [nutritionally questionable ingredients in bold] Milled corn, sugar, soluble corn fiber, molasses, contains 2% or less of salt, oil (coconut, soybean and/or cottonseed, mono- and diglycerides, wheat starch, annatto color, BHT for freshness.
#3 Kellogg’s Sugar Frosted Flakes Became Frosted Flakes
Tony the Tiger used to tell us, “They’re Grrrr-eat!” Sure, they’re grrrr-eat – for creating hyperactive children before sending them off to school. So let’s look at the label and see how nutritious Frosted Flakes are after Kellogg removed “Sugar” from the name.
Frosted Flakes provides 11 grams of sugar, 140 mg of sodium, less than 1g of fiber, 1 gram of protein and a fraction, far less than 1/3 which is what a meal should provide, of the daily value of necessary vitamins and minerals per ¾ cup serving [and seriously, who really eats ONLY a ¾ cup serving of any sweetened cereal?].
Its ingredients are [nutritionally questionable ingredients in bold] Milled corn, sugar, less than 2% or less of malt flavoring, salt, BHT for freshness.
Is there any question why obesity has been on the rise in children?
#2 Kellogg’s Sugar Smacks Became Honey Smacks
In 2008, Consumer Reports noted that Honey Smacks was more that 50% sugar by weight, the highest amount of sugar in a breakfast cereal (along with Post’s Golden Crisp). But at least they removed sugar from the name!
Honey Smacks provides a whopping 15 grams of sugar, 1 gram of fiber, 2 grams protein and less than 1/3 of the daily value of vitamins and minerals per ¾ cup serving.
Its ingredients are [nutritionally questionable ingredients in bold] Sugar [but wait, I thought these were “Honey” Smacks!?], wheat, dextrose, honey [you mean to tell me 3 of the first 4 ingredients are added sugars!], contains 2% or less of vegetable oil (hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated soybean), salt, caramel color, soy lecithin, BHT for freshness.
#1 Post Super Sugar Crisps Became Golden Crisp
Golden Crisp didn’t make the top of the list because it has the highest amount of sugar per serving – Honey Smacks beats Golden Crisp by 1 gram in this category. Golden Crisp gets the #1 spot because they were willing to put “corn syrup” on the ingredients list.
Golden Crisp contains 14 grams of sugar, less than 1 gram fiber, 2 grams protein and less than 1/3 of the daily value of vitamins and minerals per ¾ cup serving.
And here’s what you’re paying for [nutritionally questionable ingredients in bold]: sugar, wheat, corn syrup, honey, caramel color, salt.
This is the sort of precedent the cereal industry has established. Let’s hope Kashi raises the bar and honestly promotes their products.