Honey Nut Cheerios
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Honey Nut Cheerios is a variation of Cheerios breakfast cereal, introduced in 1979 by the General Mills cereal company. The second variation from the original Cheerios, it is sweeter than the original, with a honey and almond flavor. While this product used to be made with actual nuts, as of 2006, the nuts were discontinued, and natural flavor, from peach and apricot pit, is used instead.
Honey Nut Cheerios is the best-selling cereal in the United States.
Mascot and promotions
|Voiced by||Arnold Stang (1979–1990)
Billy West (1990–2004)
Charlie Schlatter (2004–2015)
Jason Marsden (2015–present)
|Occupation||Mascot of Honey Nut Cheerios|
Their mascot is an anthropomorphic bee, designed for the first commercials by Dean Yeagle at Zander's Animation Parlour in New York City. The bee did not have a name until 2000, when Kristine Tong, a fifth grade student from Coolidge, Texas, won a national contest to name the bee, dubbing him "BuzzBee". The name was later shortened to Buzz, which was the submission that took second place in the contest. Buzz also appeared as the host in the Honey Nut Cheerios Spelling Bee game, which was named after the breakfast cereal. Buzz has been portrayed by several different voice actors. He was originally voiced by Arnold Stang until 1990. He was then voiced by Billy West, Charlie Schlatter and Jason Marsden.
Historically, Honey Nut Cheerios has participated in much the same promotional advertising as the original brand, while collaborating with the field of NASCAR and especially driver Bill Lester, in promoting healthy diets. In 1985, Baskin-Robbins introduced an ice cream flavor based on the cereal called Honey Nut Crunch. Promotional tie-ins included gift certificates in cereal boxes and special Honey Nut Crunch sundaes in stores.
General Mills has been active in the conservation of bees since 2011; In 2011, the company began investing in the Xerces Society to help promote biodiversity and pollinator conservation. In March 2017, General Mills announced the Buzz Bee image had been removed from boxes of Honey Nut Cheerios. Images of the new box showed a white empty space where Buzz Bee used to be. Below the image of the bowl of cereal, a plea to "Help Bring Back The Bees" was added. This was to raise awareness of pollinator decline. Cheerios promised to give away wildflower seeds to be planted for bees. In the announcement, General Mills made note that 30% of ingredients they use depend on pollinators. As a part of this campaign, General Mills also plans to expand their pollinator habitat to 3,300 acres. Honey Nut Cheerios surpassed their goal of 100 million seeds by giving away 1.5 billion seeds.
This campaign has struck controversy in some environmental communities. Kathryn Turner, an ecologist, commented that the packages of seeds contain species that are invasive to some geographic locations, and urges individuals to become more educated before planting the seeds.
Commercials for the product have been a mainstay of Saturday-morning cartoon programming for many years. They generally depict the mascot tempting a hapless child or adult with a sparkling bowl of Honey Nut Cheerios, and their attempts to compete for it.
The styles of commercials have changed over the years. In the early 1980s, commercials mostly featured adults talking about the cereal and how good and healthy it is. During a majority of the 1980s and 1990s, commercials would mainly be about Buzz trying to tempt someone with a bowl of Honey Nut Cheerios. They would refuse, but Buzz would not give up; he would eventually tell them that the cereal contains real golden honey and crunchy nuts/wholegrains, and the consumer would respond, "Did you say honey and nuts?", and have the cereal. Commercials in the late 1990s voiced by Andrew Morris, would be about Buzz coming into a classic fairy tale and do the same thing he's always done in the past. Commercials in the 2000s contain animated adventures about Buzz and his friends outsmarting villains trying to steal all the honey in the hive. Most recently, commercials have been featured in CGI. In 2013, Buzz was given a "swag makeover" by Nelly.
One Honey Nut Cheerios commercial that has gone on to become one of the longest-running commercials in history features Buzz paying a visit to the infamous Ebenezer Scrooge. This commercial (which first premiered in the Fall of 1989) was eventually revised to reflect the newer Buzz voice by Andy Morris in the mid 1990s, when the cereal's tagline was changed to "Nobody can say No to Honey Nut Cheerios". This commercial generally re-airs during each winter holiday season. Since 2009, Heath Brandon has been the voice over announcer for Honey Nut Cheerios. Some of Buzz's commercials were used to advertise the cereal in the U.K. during the 2000s, when the name was changed and he was removed from being the mascot.
Since 2016, the brand has shown a cut-out silhouette of the Buzz mascot to inform buyers about the declining bee population. They have joined forces with Burt's Bees to raise awareness over this potentially catastrophic issue, using the hashtag #BringBacktheBees on social media.
Many of this cereal's taglines overlapped with each other. They were used on different advertisements.
- It's a honey of an O. (1979–2004; 2014–present)
- It's Honey Nut Cheerios! (1979–1992; 2000–2004; 2014–present)
- It's Irrezzzzistable! (1992–1993)
- Race for the taste! (1993–1995)
- Little O, Big Taste! (1995–1999)
- Nobody can say "No" to Honey Nut Cheerios. (1995–2004)
- From the hive that's nuts about honey! (2004–2008)
- Bee happy, Bee healthy! (2004–2013)
- Must Be the Honey. (2013–present, based on Nelly's "Ride wit Me")
Honey Nut Cheerios maintains much of the same health appeal of the original Cheerios, due to its soluble fiber. Package nutritional information explains that "three grams of soluble fiber daily from whole grain oat foods, like Honey Nut Cheerios, in a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol, may reduce the risk of heart disease. Honey Nut Cheerios has 0.75g per serving." This has been linked to the ability to lower cholesterol. As with Cheerios, the American Heart Association certified the cereal as "heart-healthy" for meeting the food criteria for saturated fat and cholesterol content.
Honey Nut Cheerios also contain substantially more sugar (9.6 Grams/serving), when contrasted against General Mill's Cheerios, which contain 1.2 Grams/serving.
- "All in the family" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2006-10-15. Retrieved August 21, 2014.
- Elliott, Stuart (2011-06-27). "7 Agencies Will Tell You This Cereal Is No. 1". The New York Times. Retrieved August 21, 2014.
- "General Mills: One of the World's largest food Companies". Retrieved 2017-03-29.
- Kristen Painter. "Bee missing from Honey Nut Cheerios box to raise pollinator awareness". Star Tribune. Retrieved 11 March 2017.
- "General Mills' bee blunder: Environmentalists call foul on company's seed campaign". Fox News. 2017-03-21. Retrieved 2017-03-29.
- "Bee Got Swag - Buzz meets Nelly" at YouTube
- "Honey Nut Cheerios and cholesterol". Archived from the original on 2011-02-13.
- Hakim, Danny (November 10, 2017). "Are Honey Nut Cheerios Healthy? We Look Inside the Box". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331.