Sunday, March 02, 2008

A Raisin in the Sun

Raisin Bran is about five tiers below my favorite cereals (Reese's Peanut Butter Crunch and Grape Nuts). I was reminded of this when I found myself without any other cereal options at breakfast this morning. It's bland, ugly, has a weird texture, devoid of anything interesting to read on the box, and is entirely lacking in it's one saving grace: the raisins. Why are they so proud of the two scoops? It's such a inadequate sum of sugar coated raisins to make the bran palatable. Not only that, most of the time it's wholly inaccurate. Every box regardless of size has that smiling sun god (whose official name is the highly original "Sunny") proclaiming its two scoop guarantee. It's impossible that this is true when you compare the mini boxes that come in variety ten packs and the gigantic warehouse club sized boxes that are about as large and unwieldy as a rocket launcher and assume they contain the same finite amount of raisin goodness.

That begs the question, why hasn't anyone called Kellogg out for its undeserved dominant share of the the Raisin/Bran breakfast cereal market with such an inferior product? If I was the powers that be behind Post Raisin Bran or even General Mills' Total Raisin Bran I'd have a simple course of action: up the scoops! Hell, if Kellogg is so damn proud of their measly two scoops, we're going to three! It's just a matter of simple logic. If two scoops of raisins is the reason why people prefer Kellogg's Raisin Bran, more than two scoops should make a superior cereal. I know I'd certainly need at least three, perhaps even four scoops to move Raisin Bran up my personal depth chart.

If a good old fashion raisin scoop war did erupt between the major cereal brands, in the end it could only benefit us the consumer. Just as the decade long disposable razor war has given us razors with sentient intelligence and an infinite number of blades, a raisin arms race could finally breath some much needed innovation into this stale industry. Along with the ever increasing ratio of raisins to bran, there might be a prune, maybe concord grapes, craisins, a dried apricot thrown in there; raisin flavored bran; bran flavored raisins; genetically altered grain/raisin hybrids; raisins in space; raisins with the ability to feel the emotion known as love; oh the brave new world of possibilities!

Now I'm sure there'll be some crusty, old, reactionaries who may not like this bold future that awaits us and are scared by the perceived horrors of a post-bi-scoop world (actually considering the average age group that probably eat Raisin Bran it's probably most of the market). However, progress cannot be avoided, perhaps not in my lifetime (definitely not in the average Raisin Bran consumer's lifetime) but innovation will find a way. And on that day when mankind has transcended the dark ages by casting aside its restrictive two scoops shackles the sun will shine high and bright.


  1. you just wanted to label a blog post "cereal killing"

  2. I respectfully disagree with your assessment of the poor quality (I've always liked Raisin Bran, even when the raisins are gone. It's the sludge I enjoy, when the flakes are squooshy,but there could be a raisin hiding beneath.), but I will say that it is probably longtime marketing that has held Kellog's Raisin Brand above the pack. Marketing during times of financial hardship, when competitors were avoiding the expenditure of advertising, created customer loyalty/familiarity for the Kellogg brand (if not necessarily for the specific cereal) that is tough to break without some huge innovation.

    Like perhaps three scoops. (: