Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Hot cereal and milk to go

The current economic climate may draw people back to traditional foods, including hot cereals such as oatmeal. Food manufacturer, Kozy Shack, has recently introduced a new line of ready to eat, multi-grain cereals called "Ready Grains".

Certainly, instant hot cereals are not new. But, what makes Ready Grains unique is that they are packaged in bowl with milk. This makes them extra convenient, and they can be enjoyed hot or cold and will come in four flavors.

Convenience along with that wholesome touch. Should have considerable appeal if marketed well.

Technorati Tags: , ,

Monday, March 23, 2009

Quaker finding a way to take off?

The rough economy is forcing people to reconsider their behaviors and buying patterns, and as I have previously pointed out, this includes the role of breakfast cereal. The companies that succeed in this time will understand this and respond to it.

Quaker Oats may be one of the wise ones. They have recently launched a new marketing campaign that reinvigorates interest in their foundational product, which typically doesn't have the appeal of the more flashier cereals. They are doing this not simply by praising the economics of cooking your own oats for breakfast, but with a "Go humans go" theme that emphasizes its sound nutritional value.

Value. Just what consumers are looking for today.

New York Times article

Technorati Tags: , , ,

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Don't eat the box

Just when you thought the biggest health problems with some cereals are the high sugar content and artificial colors, etc., the European Food Safety Authority recently studied 4-methylbenzophenone, a compound used in setting the printing ink on breakfast cereal boxes. There was concern that this compound could be especially dangerous to children and could be a carcinogen.

The EFSA concluded that they have limited data to make solid conclusions, and that "short term consumption ... should not pose a risk to most people". The concern is that there could be migration of the substance from the packaging into the cereal itself.

So, to be safe, don't eat the box.

Technorati Tags: , ,

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Malt-O-Meal thriving in this economy

As I reported late last year, the current economic situation is and will have an affect on cereal purchasing, and therefore on cereal companies.

A recent report in the Minneapolis / St. Paul Business Journal confirms this, pointing out that economy cereal producer Malt-O-Meal is having trouble keeping up with the demand. They are running their "two manufacturing plants 24 hours a day, seven days a week" and will open a new plant in the next few months.

Even in a recession there is opportunity. While the big cereal competitors will try to compete on value, companies like Malt-O-Meal should do very well since they already own that category.

Technorati Tags: , , ,

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Giving Phelps away

The recent controversy over Michael Phelps' partaking of marijuana has been an embarrassment to Kellogg, as previously reported. The problem facing Kellogg was not only one of public relations, but also what to do with the many boxes of Corn Flakes and Frosted Flakes bearing his photo.

The San Francisco Chronicle reports that the solution appears to be donating those boxes to food banks. Apparently the San Francisco Food Bank recently received close to 2 tons of the despised cereal boxes.

Kellogg is not commenting on the donation.

Technorati Tags: , , ,

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Cereal Art

Using cereal in art is a common activity among children and occasionally with more serious artists. There's even a artistic organization called "Cerealart" focused on three-dimensional art that explores "the possibilities presented by consumer culture". While Cerealart doesn't usually actually use cereal as a medium, it can. And a new work, entitled "Breakfast of Champions" by Hank Willis Thomas and Ryan Alexiev, is a mosaic portrait of U.S. President Barack Obama made with a wide variety of cereal pieces.

Technorati Tags: , , ,

Saturday, March 07, 2009

National Cereal Day

In case you didn't know today, March 7th, is officially "National Cereal Day" supposedly to commemorate the invention of Corn Flakes by the Kellogg brothers in 1897.

Enjoy a bowl!

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

General Mills and Target go vintage (again)

For the second year in a row, General Mills is producing a limited edition of vintage cereal boxes but available only through Target. An interesting article in Advertising Age probes this campaign and relationship and suggests that "retro designs of their youth appeal to stressed shoppers' desire for comfort".

This year's boxes include: Cheerios, Honey-Nut Cheerios, Lucky Charms, Cocoa Puffs, and Trix. Like last year there is also a vintage T-shirt offer.

General Mills has hit on an interesting idea - one that could be expanded further. It brings back "fun" to eating cereal.

Technorati Tags: , , ,