Snap, Crackle and Pop!

I’m determined to land a job before the holidays set in. I don’t want to write a “Dear Santa” note begging the old man for employment. I’d like to bake him cookies and relish in the splendor of a few relaxing, cozy days before I return to my job to work like hell for something I believe in. I’ve had some time this past month to reflect on my job search and I’ve determined that more than anything, I’d like to work for an organization that promotes causes I’m passionate about. Yes, sustainable food, but there’s so much more out there. I don’t want to inflict constrictions on myself. The job market is bad enough.

Picture this. It’s Saturday morning. I roll out of bed, brew a strong cup of Earl Grey tea, smile at the sunshine, then sit down at the computer and am confronted with this article on the front page of The New York Times. Waaaa waaa. At least I’m not the only one.

As Henny said a couple of months ago, “Looks like I picked the absolute worst time to leave my job.” Maybe true. I replied, “If all else fails, I can head back to the farms.” And that’s certainly true. When I’m feeling utterly fed up with my job hunt, I daydream about WWOOFing in Mexico – speaking Spanish, mastering the art of making corn tortillas, taking a break from fieldwork while sipping a Negro Modelo in the shade. Perhaps it’s the daydreams that sustain me. The thing is, I’m honestly loving San Francisco. I want to make it work here. I really do.

In recent job news, I made it to round two for an Editor position with an online social entrepreneurship venture and had to submit a lengthy application. One of the components was writing a timely news summary item. I’ve deemed it Happelsauce worthy and included it below. I think I once claimed that rice krispie treats were good for me, but I only said it to make myself feel better for eating half the pan. How do these Kellogg’s executives come up with this stuff?

A Collector's Item

Snap, Crackle and Pop Goes Kellogg’s Immunity Claim

Thanks to San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera, Kellogg’s has announced that it will discontinue boxes of Rice Krispies, Cocoa Krispies and Frosted Krispies cereal that feature the eye-catching banner reading, “Now helps support your child’s IMMUNITY.”

For food industry giants, it seemingly all comes down to food science. The online Rice Krispies product homepage states that each Krispie “is made from a single grain of rice.” Okay, fine then. But click on the Product Details tab to learn that each grain of rice is blasted with first and foremost, sugar. Then glucose-fructose syrup, barley malt flavouring, and the list goes on. How could these little Krispies possibly boost immunity? Apparently, when the other ingredients include increased amounts of vitamins A, B, C and E. As Marion Nestle, nutrition professor, food activist and author, so eloquently put it, “Yes, these nutrients are involved in immunity, but I can’t think of a nutrient that isn’t involved in the immune system.”

Herrera, caught wind of Kellogg’s latest effort to slap health claims on their sugar-laden products sprayed with a variety of vitamins and minerals. On October 27th, he wrote a letter to the president and CEO of Kellogg’s expressing concern that their immunity claims were misleading. He mentioned parents increasing concern with the spread of the H1N1 virus (“swine flu”) and suggested the importance of parents receiving “accurate information about what they can do to protect their children’s health.” One week after Herrera sent the letter, Kellogg’s decided to discontinue the claim.

All you Krispies fans out there, hold onto your box of Snap, Crackle and Pop with the immunity claim emblazoned across the front. It’s officially a collector’s item.

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