Thursday, December 28, 2006

From constipation to big business

There are a number of histories of cereal out there, including many on the Internet. Many really don't say anything new. But, I came across an article today from The Guardian of the U.K. which gives a brief history of the origins of breakfast cereal. For anyone interested in the stories behind one of our current nutritional and cultural staples this article is worth reading:

"How constipation cure became huge business"

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Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Disney's nutritional guidelines

As announced last month, Disney has changed its food strategy. As far as cereal is concerned it has abandoned its attempt to work through smaller manufacturers, and before that Kellogg. The new products will also have a lower price point.

New information is coming out now (at Food Navigator USA) that Disney has developed specific nutritional guidelines for its food products (including cereal) to be made and sold by General Mills. Disney is targeting children with its foods, but is insisting that they are made with whole foods and contain significant vitamin D and calcium. In addition, there will be limits on calories, fat, saturated fat, and sugar.

Does this mean that Disney cereals will be less fun than before?

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Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Breakfast choices

As confirmed in one of my recent polls, new marketing research reveals that taste preference and familiarity are the most important drivers behind people's breakfast choices. The NPD Group discovered that these factors are more important than convenience, although the latter is growing in significance. Other interesting study results include the discovery that there isn't much difference between weekday and weekend patterns, and that coffee and cold cereal remain the top breakfast choices.

More information on this study can be read at FoodNavigator-USA.

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Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Cereal Bowl Light

The perfect Christmas gift for the cereal lover?

Maybe. But, probably not until next year because it is already sold out and it would probably too late to order anyway.

The Cereal Bowl Light is a pop art light that is within a cereal bowl. It even has real Froot Loops on top, and lights up when you touch the spoon.

Creative. But, ultimately will sit on the shelf after the novelty wears off. Besides, the cereal will probably get quite nasty after a while.

And, expensive. $90.00 Available from Etsy.

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Monday, December 18, 2006

Weekly Poll Update

The results from our latest Breakfast Bowl poll are in. Last week's question was: "Who is your favorite current Kellogg cereal character?"

Here are the results:

Tony the Tiger - 38%
Dig 'Em - 15%
Cornelius; Snap, Crackle, Pop; & Toucan Sam (tie) - 12%
Mr. Mini-Wheats - 8%
CinnaMon - 4%

My take on the above results: No surprises. Tony has long been the most popular spokes-character for Kellogg.

Here's the question for this week:

I am interested to find out who your favorite cereal character is. For this round, we will deal with current characters and each week deal with one company at a time. So, for this week: "Who is your favorite current General Mills cereal character?"


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Thursday, December 14, 2006

More chocolate

Recently I reported on Kellogg's European introduction of chocolate All-Bran (which I found bizarre).

Well, chocolate lovers, the trend will continue to grow. You will no longer be limited to kid's cereals like Cocoa Puffs or Count Chocula. Soon, a whole new breed of "healthy" chocolate cereals will be hitting the store aisles.

According to articles in Brandweek and Marketing Daily we can look forward to such innovations as Quaker's Life Chocolate Oat Crunch and Kellogg's Special K Chocolately Delight.

All in an attempt to boost sagging sales.

At least these new offerings sound better than Chocolate All-Bran!

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Thursday, December 07, 2006

Cereal Science

Another resource for cereal fanatics:

Cereal Science is a new website with growing resources devoted to cereal. But, this is no stale industry site. It's actually a fun place to visit. According to their own description,

"Cereal Science is a project for people who are as passionate about cereal as we are.
We extensively test cereals and provide real-life data in a format that all humans can understand."

The site currently includes test results, audio reports, movie clips, and commentary.

Check it out.

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Wednesday, December 06, 2006


I don't typically like to post on every new cereal-related item, but on things that are noteworthy or innovative. A good example relates to cereal dispensers. There are many on the market, and most are not that exciting.

Breakfix is the latest breakfast cereal dispenser, and while I'm still not convinced that I would buy one, I'm impressed with the "appliance" nature of it. Breakfix is a counter-top mechanical cereal dispenser, is operated by batteries, and looks quite attractive.

If we purchased every new convenience device out there our cupboards would be overflowing with gadgets and appliances, and we would be unable to use them! Breakfix, in particular, does not appear to really solve any real pressing issues, and may be a hindrance for those who like to have several cereals on hand.

My idea of the idea cereal dispenser: Holds several cereals, but more importantly, dispenses cold milk too!

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Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Chocolate Fiber?

Kellogg has recently introduced All-Bran Chocolate in some European markets (e.g. France and Italy). All-Bran is the ultimate "health" cereal, with its extreme fiber content. Isn't it a complete contradiction to mix in the ultimate "sin" food?

Even chocolate purists (like Chocolate Bytes) disagree with the move, suggesting that "Some things were never meant to be chocolafied ... and breakfast cereal is one of them".

Maybe this will work in the challenging European market, but I hope Kellogg doesn't try this in North America as it would erode the strong, health-oriented All-Bran brand.

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Monday, December 04, 2006

Weekly Poll Update

The results from our latest Breakfast Bowl poll are in. Last week's question was: "How many days a week do I eat cereal?"

Here are the results:

Zero - 13%
One - 4%
Two - 9%
Three - 0%
Four - 0%
Five - 39%
Six - 0%
Seven - 35%

My take on the above results: The polarized nature of the results is interesting. Many people eat it daily or almost daily. The rest eat it seldom or never. No 50% respondents.

Here's the question for this week:

I am interested to find out who your favorite cereal character is. For this round, we will deal with current characters and each week deal with one company at a time. So, for this week: "Who is your favorite current Kellogg cereal character?"


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Sunday, December 03, 2006

Cereal fanatics who are looking for an opportunity to interact with others will want to take note of, a new online forum. They proclaim their focus is on cereal box collecting, but there is also a forum section devoted to cereal memories. Even the Smilies available are of cereal characters!

Check it out.

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Friday, December 01, 2006

Bloggers and cereal

It's been awhile since I've done this, so here's some noteworthy blog posts on cereal from the last month or so:

James Geurts' has had enough with the industrial-strength glue used on cereal bags.
DJ Cline expresses frustrations over the changing size of cereal boxes.
The Shanghaiist shares what's like looking for breakfast cereal in Shaghai.
Filapalooza takes a leisurely trip down cereal memory lane
Words for My Enjoyment writes a brief drama dealing with individual serving sizes of cereal
Mush Sports bucks the trend against simple blog surveys and provides a detailed look at seven favorite cereals.

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