This #$!% Has Got to Stop: Part Six

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It’s easy enough to despise Chocolate Cheerios, but they point the way to an understanding that organic food can hardly be considered blameless when it comes to the relentless drive of Big Food to addict or at least hibituate children to eating what amounts to dessert for breakfast.

A few days after we posted a picture of the looming display of Chocolate Cheerios, I happened to be staying in a house where someone bought a package of Cascadian Farm Organic Chocolate Granola. After one glance at the Granola label, I decided to go on both companies’ websites and do a little nutritional comparison.

My first discovery (I knew this, but had forgotten), was that Cascadian Farm is not the operation of some Northwestern family business, but a brand of General Mills, just like Cheerios. So although the feeling may be a little more touchy-feely, the corporate philosophy is the same.

And the nutritionals read similarly. Cheerios, in fact, has fewer calories, less fat, and less sugar, at least if you stick to the serving size. It also has considerably less fiber.

Obvioiusly a real granola is superior to Cheerios. (Equally obviously, regular Cheerios are far superior to the choco-puff version.) But despite the not-meaningless organic-ness of the Cascadian Farm product, it’s not real granola. What it is, sorta, is crumbled up cookies with a little whole grain thrown in.

Posted in Food Politics

10 Comments

  1. thelandanimal said...

    Both of these cereals look disgusting.

  2. eatdonteat said...

    What if instead of saying it contains whole grain, may reduce the risk of heart disease, real cocoa, etc etc it said that it contains 4 types of sugar (Cheerios – sugar, corn syrup, dried corn syrup, barley malt extract, 24% sugars; Cascadian: sugar, tapioca syrup, molasses, malted barley extract, 27% sugars)See also the UK food labeling traffic light system – http://bit.ly/1yLJHC

  3. nenkc said...

    I agree with my son…….if I can’t go home and cook something that resembles it then it’s probably not food

  4. Anonymous said...

    This is why I now make your fabulous granola from "Food Matters" every week. This week’s has almonds and pumpkin seeds and freeze-dried strawberries and no chocolate.

  5. juicifuldesign said...

    The only thing more horrific than Chocolate Cheerios is Reese’s Puffs by our good friends at General Mills, because every kid should crave a Reese’s peanut butter cup for breakfast.

  6. chefcontos said...

    Ridiculous! This SHOULD BE ILLEGAL!!!!!For this reason and because I want to be in-charge of what I eat not some cooperation, I make my own granola every Sunday and have it all week. It takes all of 10 minutes to mix it and get it into the oven. I use VT maple syrup as the sweetener and I add half of my nuts and seeds after the granola is baked so that I still can get the benefits of raw nuts. My base recipe comes from the book "Foods To Live By".

  7. kathdedon said...

    Here’s a second vote for your granola in "Food Matters". I just made it last week and it’s great!

  8. Anonymous said...

    At least Cascadian doesn’t have corn syrup processed every way imaginable. I’d take unprocessed tapioca and molasses any day over that stuff!

  9. Anonymous said...

    You mention the fact that Cascadian Farms is owned by General Mills. That fact reminded me of a chart that a friend shared with me a while ago. She is a student at Michigan State University and one of her professors created these charts outlining the Organic Processing Industry Structure. Here is the link: https://www.msu.edu/~howardp/organicindustry.htmlPretty interesting stuff.

  10. wiwthere said...

    along these same lines, i bought multi-grain cheerios the other day for my husband, because he has been trying to get more whole grains in his diet. should have thought more about that purchase before taking them home, though…. multi-grain cheerios count whole grain corn as it’s first ingredient, which is surely less beneficial to your diet than the whole grain oats that make up regular cheerios. they also contain an equal amount of fiber to regular cheerios, but more sugar! what a scam. btw mark, you are my favorite.

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