We can’t let the grain die

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As a resident grain investigator of The takeawayI feel it is my duty to inform the public that we are all short of grain. Kellogg’s recently announced that it will split into three separate companies focused on cereals, snacks, and plant-based foods, reports the Associated Press. Part of the motivation behind the decision to split the company is that in doing so, the company will be able to concentrate its efforts on each category to better increase its sales.

The drop in grain purchases is an injustice that I can’t accept, but before I go into why grain needs to come back, it’s best to understand where it all went wrong.

Why grain sales are down

Over the years, it seems cereal has become less and less popular among consumers, with many opting for other, more portable breakfast options like breakfast bars. Return in 2016research firm IBISWorld estimated sales of hot and cold cereals at $10.6 billion, down 17% from the $12.7 billion reached in 2009. The company also predicted a steady decline through 2020, and that prediction was pretty accurate.

Along with concerns about the cereal’s nutritional value, convenience and portability play a big role in why people have started turning away from this classic breakfast option. Another research firm, Mintel Group LTd, surveyed consumers in 2015 and found that 39% of millennials (aged 18-34) said cereal was inconvenient because you had to clean a dish afterwards. They are right, but we will come back to this later.

Flash forward to 2021 and the great COVID quarantine throws just about every industry out of control. However, it was good news for cereals because everyone was home with a lot more free time to pour a bowl. Unfortunately, the surge in grain consumption did not last between recent inflation and the return to work.

Why Cereals Must Stay

As a child, this is one of the first meals you learn to make yourself. Pouring cereal and milk into the bowl without making a big mess can be a challenge for little hands. Concrete example, the movie Grandpa with Adam Sandler. In the film, Julian, played by a young Cole Sprouse, tries to pour himself a bowl of cereal and ends up spilling a whole gallon of milk on the floor. To creatively solve this problem, Sandler’s character pours the milk into a lotion dispenser.

The whole cereal pouring experience is a way for the characters to bond and a way for the child to learn life skills. It may seem like a lot of pressure to put on cereal, but food has meaning for all of us. Cereals have helped shape many childhoods and continue to accompany us into adulthood.

This idea that cereal is less convenient because you have to pour it into a bowl and then wash the bowl is a bit too dramatic. Cereal is actually a reliable work breakfast because you can keep your bowl and milk at the office. The only item you would have to pack is the cereal itself if you tend to want something different every day, but the brilliant cereal side there is an incredible lightness. Also, it might not be for everyone, but some cereals are quite delicious as a dry snack to eat in a portable bag.

People feed dry toddler Honey Nut Cheerios all the time without a second thought, so why shouldn’t adult adults enjoy the same convenience on the go? What I mean is that grain needs us now and we need grain. Don’t let the cereal die.

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