Worst Cereals Are Most Heavily Marketed to Kids

Industry's promise to self-regulate an 'abject failure'
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 26, 2009 10:26 AM CDT
Kellogg cereals that make up individual servings in a variety pack are displayed in this file photo of July 25, 2006, in Cincinnati.   (AP Photo/Al Behrman, file)
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(Newser) – Cereals marketed to kids are drastically less nutritious than those pitched to adults, despite industry promises to clean up its act, finds a new study from Yale’s Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity. The study confirms what a quick glance at the cereal aisle would tell you: Cereals aimed at kids have 85% more sugar, 60% more sodium, and 65% less fiber than their adult counterparts.

“Industry self-regulation is an abject failure,” says the Rudd Center’s director. “The worst cereals are being marketed very heavily to children.” A Kellogg spokesman says it has a strict standard on what to market to kids under age 12, and General Mills argues that cereal eaters are more nutritious than non-cereal eaters. But those companies own the top spots on the study’s least nutritious list with General Mills’ Reese’s Puffs in first and Kellogs’ Corn Pops in second.