When Cereal Boxes Are Full of It

If it irritates you that the Smart Choices food program claimed that Ritz Bits Peanut Butter Chocolatey Blast crackers are good for you, you’ll probably be stoked to read Dan Mitchell of Slate describe San Francisco’s assault on spurious cereal health claims.

Mitchell notes: “The suspension of Smart Choices didn’t stop insane label claims. Far from it.” Kellogg’s Cocoa Krispies are “still claiming, in giant letters emblazoned across the box, that the sugary cereal ‘[n]ow helps support your child’s immunity.’ In this worrisome time of virulent viruses, such a claim is likely to give some parents the wrong idea. But really, at any time, such a claim is at best amoral and at worst sinister.”

Whether San Francisco city attorney Dennis Herrera has the standing to take the company to the woodshed remains to be seen. But so long as every new product on the market (other than, perhaps, Drank) feels the need to sell itself as some kind of tasty parallel form of medicine, I’m grateful someone is working to make the marketeers back up their boasts.

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