November 16th, 2015

"Cheerios Protein" Has Negligibly More Protein, but Far More Sugar, than Original Cheerios

By Center for Science in the Public Interest

CSPI Sues General Mills, Citing Misleading Labeling and False Advertising

“Consumers who buy Cheerios Protein probably think they’re doing themselves a favor, and that this more expensive product is essentially a protein-fortified version of original Cheerios,” said CSPI litigation director Maia Kats. “In fact, the main thing that distinguishes Cheerios Protein from original Cheerios is the huge amount of sugar and extra calories. With 17 times as much sugar as original Cheerios, Cheerios Protein is actually more conducive to diabetes, weight gain, heart disease, and tooth decay.”

CSPI’s complaint also says that General Mills’ marketing on television and the Internet for Cheerios Protein is false and misleading. One ad featuring NASCAR driver Austin Dillon takes a child into a Cheerios Protein stock car and has him “fueled up” and racing off to school.

The lawsuit was filed in United States District Court for the Northern District of California. Besides Kats, consumers are represented by CSPI litigation attorney Will Thanhauser, Michael Reese of Reese LLP, and Laurence King and Linda Fong of Kaplan Fox, LLP. In recent weeks, CSPI’s litigation unit has announced resolutions of cases involving labeling of Coca-Cola’s Vitaminwater and Campbell Soup Company’s Plum Organics line of baby food.

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