Klondike Pete’s Crunchy Nuggets
Who the heck is Klondike Pete? Well, according to Mr. Breakfast:
Klondike Pete’s Crunchy Nuggets came in both a “wheat cereal” and “rice cereal” variety. The cereal’s mascot, Klondike Pete, was a bearded prospector who searched for gold with a mule named Thorndike.
The cereals began as Ranger Joe Rice Honnies and Ranger Joe Wheat Honnies in 1939. The National Biscuit Company (later known as Nabisco) bought the Ranger Joe cereals in 1954 and changed their names to Rice Honeys and Wheat Honeys.
In the late 1960′s, sales of the Honeys cereals began to sag. In 1971, in an attempt to revive the cereals, the names were changed again, this time to Winnie-The-Pooh Great Honey Crunchers, which came in both rice and wheat varieties. Despite a barrage of marketing centered around the Winnie-The-Pooh character, the cereals’ sales continued to disappoint.
Nabisco give the cereals one last shot. About a year after the Pooh incarnations were introduced, the cereal changed names for the last time, this time to Klondike Pete’s Crunchy Nuggets, rice and wheat.
In 1975, Klondike Pete’s Crunchy Nuggets was discontinued and the cereal that had existed under one name or another for 36 years was finally gone.
There you have it.
Ah, Ralston. The undisputed masters of cheaply-made licensed cereal. Just like Ralston’s later Nintendo brand of cereals, you get two bags in one cereal box. Which side are you gonna eat first? I would say just imagine Trix cereal focusing on two flavors instead of five or six but these are supposed to be… tangy? Um, I don’t know if I want my breakfast cereal to be tangy.
An interesting article was posted this past summer at 24/7 Wall St. about brands that are projected to disappear in 2012. Sears, Sony Pictures, Nokia and MySpace are on the list but on a more serious note Kellogg’s Corn Pops made the list as well.
Debuting in 1951 as “Sugar Pops”, the cereal was re-titled ”Sugar Corn Pops” in the late 1970s before finally settling on “Corn Pops” in the 1980s. I remember a few years back they changed the name yet again, this time simply to “Pops” (which I always found strange). Luckily, the cereal was restored to “Corn Pops” after only a few months.
Surprisingly, in the United States alone the cereal had a number of mascots over the years: Woody Woodpecker, Newt the Gnu, Sugar Pops Pete (a prairie dog cowboy), Whippersnapper (a cowboy), Big Yella (another cowboy) Poppy (a female porcupine) and most recently Sweet Toothasaur. Poppy was a mascot during the ’80s yet I have no recollection of her or anything of these other mascots. I can only remember tag-lines such as “Gotta have my Pops!” and “It’s hard to stop when it’s my Pops!” and the use of the JAWS theme in the commercials.
So what’s the reason Corn Pops is in mortal danger? Well, sales are down because people are looking towards healthier cereals and when you’re using BHT (something found in embalming fluid) as an ingredient you can’t really claim to be all that good for anyone to eat. Never mind the fact that everyone knows Corn Pops are covered in sticky, sweet sugary glaze. Falling sales are only half of it though. The price of corn is on the rise and that makes it harder for this brand to turn a profit.
Truthfully, there was nothing in the article that said Corn Pops was definitely going extinct. All the article was saying was that the brand was having a hard time and they were suggesting it’d be a wrap in 2012. Although I don’t eat Corn Pops as much as I did when I was a kid, I still get cravings for it and pick up a box every few months. It’d be a shame to think I could no longer do so come 2012.
So here’s to ya, Corn Pops. I tip my cereal bowl to you and I hope you can somehow find a way to soldier on in a world of raising costs and where people are choosier about what they consume.
Not sure exactly when this commercial came out but I’m guessing mid ’80s. I actually remember this commercial and it’s a testament to the power of marketing because this holiday commercial gives me warm feelings about a fast food joint I’ve never really been much of a fan of (chicken off the bone is slimy & disgusting).
Even if you are as greedy as Scrooge is would you really be that much of a glutton too?
I love old fast food tray liners and this one is no exception. Look at how cute this one is with a gigantic soda, order of french fries and a shake towering over this quaint little valley as a bi-plane flies overhead and a station wagon and sports car cruise down the road. Adorable and the very embodiment of the American Dream.
We were all so much more innocent in those days. McDonald’s proudly boasted “Our Biggest Are Back!” and we, the consumers, happily drank as much soda, ate as many fries and slurped as many milkshakes as we possibly could. Demand was so great that the “super size” basically became standard issue with your fast food order. No one ever thought about calories or fat intake or how livestock was being treated back then. We didn’t know and frankly, even if you told us, we wouldn’t have cared.
This guy took the fun out of everything.
I’d love to see McDonald’s give the middle finger to all the health nuts someday by running a huge ad campaign advertising the return of the Super Size. You know what? Forget simple advertising. They need to go back to proudly boasting. Scratch that — how about downright BRAGGING?
A blog post after my own heart:
A definite “YES!” to Magic Middles, Ecto Cooler and Ice Cream Cone cereal. Gator Gum itself is not available anymore but a near knockoff called Quench is on the market.