The past year hasn't been kind to the "Breakfast of Champions" with sales down 14%, but makers of the iconic orange box aren't blaming the economy for the drop in sales; instead they blame a lack of manliness.
Rather than cry over spilt milk (and profits) General Mills is launching a new version of Wheaties aimed at testosterone toting shoppers. Dubbed Wheaties Fuel, the new Wheaties cereal was put together using the input of "5 Legendary Champions and One Nutrition Expert" to meet the needs of today's modern champions.
As you read this, General Mills is sending out samples of the three new versions to more than 1,000 men across America in order to finalize the ingredient list.
The New York Times reports that the new Wheaties are, "much sweeter", and each of the prototypes will have an extra ingredient; two with clusters and one with, "raisins, cranberries and almonds." The final change to ingredients of note is the addition of Vitamin E to Wheaties Fuel and the removal of folic acid to better fit the needs of men.
I think General Mills is on to something here, and not just because they are focusing on the male consumer (which is something more companies could stand to do), but because they are adding a crunch to a classic cereal.
Nowadays, Flakes just don't cut it! A simple walk down the breakfast aisle in any grocery store will reveal that almost every classic cereal that lacked crunch a year ago has added nuggets, granola or something that adds to the chewing experience.
Among the former Wheaties eaters I spoke to the additional sweetness and crunch may be enough to bring Wheaties back to their breakfast nook.
From all accounts it seems like General Mills has a potential winner on their hands with Wheaties Fuel and so long as they keep an orange box plastered with sporting greats, Wheaties might once again become the favorite cereal for athletes, young and old.
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