Monday, September 15, 2014
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Recipe for higher sales: Add fiber, cinnamon

By
From page B5 | July 10, 2014 |

NEW YORK — General Mills hopes a pinch of cinnamon and a dash of fiber will be a recipe for stronger sales.

The Minneapolis-based company is doing things like adding more cinnamon to its Cinnamon Toast Crunch cereal and rolling out fiber-packed “better for you” cookies to boost the performance of its brands, which include Pillsbury dough, Betty Crocker baking mixes and Progresso soups.

General Mills executives sat down with The Associated Press this week to discuss these and other ways the company is trying to increase sales, which were essentially flat in its last fiscal year.

The company, which last month announced a cost-cutting plan that will include a review of its manufacturing plants, is working to adapt its offerings as it grapples with the changing eating habits of Americans.

The surging popularity of Greek yogurt in recent years, for instance, blindsided the company’s Yoplait yogurts. And the move toward foods that people think are fresher has hurt Hamburger Helper, which last year was renamed “Helper” in a nod to people who prefer chicken.

Here are some insights executives shared with AP ahead of the company’s investor day in New York City:

Conquering the cookie aisle

General Mills is entering the cookie aisle for the first time with a “better-for-you” cookie. Its new Fiber One cookie has 5 grams of fiber and 120 calories. A Pepperidge Farm chocolate chip cookie, by contrast, has no fiber and 140 calories.

Food makers have been adding nutritional benefits — particularly fiber and protein — to a wide variety of products to ease the guilt often associated with snacking. Fiber One, for instance, started as a cereal but has since expanded to a variety of snacks, including brownies and more recently, a blueberry streusel bar.

General Mills isn’t the first to bet people want healthier cookies; Kellogg’s Kashi cookies list 12 grams of whole grains and 4 grams of fiber.

Reminding people why they love cereal

General Mills is adding more cinnamon to Cinnamon Toast Crunch cereal and reformulating Trix cereal to make them taste fruitier. The tweaks will be broadcast in TV ads this summer.

“What consumers often need is a reminder to come back and try brands they’ve always loved,” said Sean O’Grady, senior vice president of sales at General Mills.

It sounds simple, but the strategy apparently works. Last year, General Mills said it was able to boost sales of Cocoa Puffs by touting their more chocolatey taste.

Still, overall cereal sales in the U.S. have been sluggish in recent years, with people increasingly turning to alternatives like Greek yogurt and breakfast sandwiches from fast-food chains.

Cereal in China: Not a thing yet

Figuring out how to get the Chinese to love a bowl of cold cereal in the morning is turning out to be a difficult task.

The problem is that the typical breakfast in China is warm and savory, said Chris O’Leary, chief operating officer for General Mills’ international division. As such, he said cereal in China is “not a top priority” for General Mills at the moment, but that the company still hopes to crack the market one day.

For now, O’Leary said General Mills has switched to testing in select markets in China, rather than trying to tackle the country as a whole. Without providing details, he said the company is selling a version of Cheerios in those markets.

Less smoking means  . . . a case of the munchies?

General Mills executives say convenience stores are turning to packaged foods and drinks as a way to make up for the steep declines in cigarette sales over the years.

So the company is hoping to capitalize by developing products specifically for convenience stores. In Iowa, for instance, it recently tested ready-to-eat Pillsbury cinnamon rolls that come four to a package for about $2. Bethany Quam, president of the company’s convenience & foodservice unit, said the idea is to make foods portable and easy to eat on the go: she noted that 60 percent of the food purchased at convenience stores gets eaten within 15 minutes in the car.

 

The Associated Press

The Associated Press

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

Solano News

Solano County theater honored for stage work

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A1, 1 Comment | Gallery

 
 
 
Suisun council to hear fireworks sales report

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A3, 4 Comments | Gallery

 
CHP schedules teen driver classes

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3, 2 Comments

Kroc Center hosts fall senior health fair

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

 
Local governments schedule meetings

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4, 1 Comment

 
Former Vacaville resident received TechCrunch honor

By Barry Eberling | From Page: B6

Recycling business honored

By Barry Eberling | From Page: B6

 
Il Fiorello schedules butchery class

By Barry Eberling | From Page: B6

 
New freeway sign goes up

By Barry Eberling | From Page: B6, 2 Comments | Gallery

Weather for Sept. 15, 2014

By Daily Republic | From Page: B10

 
.

US / World

S&P: California recovers growth with tax increases

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1, 5 Comments

 
Diplomatic push grows against Islamic State group

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1, 1 Comment

Santa Monica using $1M to evaluate its happiness

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
California nudist camp accused of stealing water

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

Wildlife experts work to keep baby opossums alive

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

 
Small earthquake rattles Northern California

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

Navy identifies pilot presumed dead after crash

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

 
Northern California deck collapse injures 9

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4, 1 Comment

California regulators seek train-bridge inspectors

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

 
Skin shocks used at Mass. school draw FDA look

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

Queen to Scots: Think carefully about future

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 1 Comment

 
US man in North Korea given 6 years of hard labor

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 1 Comment

Britain mourns slain hostage; another under threat

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
$50K reward offered for tips on trooper’s slaying

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

.

Opinion

The NFL can learn from football coaches in Texas

By Cynthia M. Allen | From Page: A8

 
To exit the Pottery Barn, turn right

By Mike Kirchubel | From Page: A8, 23 Comments

 
Immigration facts by the numbers

By Earl Heal | From Page: A8, 24 Comments

Thank you from Meals on Wheels

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A8

 
.

Living

Community Calendar: Sept. 15, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

 
Today in History: Sept. 15, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

Horoscopes: Sept. 16, 2014

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: B5

 
Randall: Travel tips for visiting my ‘homes’

By Sharon Randall | From Page: B5

Horoscopes: Sept. 15, 2014

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: A7

 
I love Howard, but I hate his addiction to drugs

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: A7

.

Entertainment

TVGrid Seot 16

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

 
Miss New York chosen as Miss America 2015

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

‘No Good Deed’ defeats ‘Guardians’ at theaters

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
TVGrid Sept 15

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A10

.

Sports

Homers from Moss, Fuld lead A’s past Seattle 4-0

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Giants lose 4-2 to Dodgers, fall 3 back in NL West

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

Jay Cutler rallies Bears past 49ers in fourth

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1, 1 Comment | Gallery

 
Raiders embarrassed after 30-14 loss to Texans

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Armijo girls run to 3rd-place finish in Folsom

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B2

 
Keselowski wins opening round of NASCAR’s Chase

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

USA wins basketball worlds, 129-92 over Serbia

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

 
Could Pacquiao fight be in cards for Mayweather?

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

Horschel caps amazing run with FedEx Cup

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
Kim beats Webb by 1 to win Evian Championship

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

.

Business

.

Obituaries

.

Comics

Sally Forth Sept 16

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Rose is Rose Sept 16

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Beetle Bailey Sept 16

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Wizard of Id Sept 16

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

For Better or Worse Sept 16

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
B.C. Sept 16

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Dilbert Sept 16

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Baby Blues Sept 16

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Get Fuzzy Sept 16

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Pickles Sept 16

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Blondie Sept 16

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Garfield September 16

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Peanuts Sept 16

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Baldo Sept 16

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Frank and Ernest Sept 16

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
Zits Sept 16

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

Cryptoquote Sept 16

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Word Sleuth Sept 16

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

Sudoku Sept 16

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Bridge Sept 16

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

Crossword Sept 16

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Wizard of Id Sept 15

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Beetle Bailey Sept 15

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
For Better or Worse Sept 15

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Pickles Sept 15

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Frank and Ernest Sept 15

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Rose is Rose Sept 15

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Blondie Sept 15

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Sally Forth Sept 15

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Baby Blues Sept 15

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Baldo Sept 15

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Get Fuzzy Sept 15

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

B.C. Sept 15

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Garfield September 15

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Zits Sept 15

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Dilbert Sept 15

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Peanuts Sept 15

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Crossword Sept 15

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

Cryptoquote Sept 15

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7, 1 Comment

 
Word Sleuth Sept 15

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

Sudoku Sept 15

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7