Saturday, October 11, 2008

Well isn't that special?

Here at Team H.O.P.E. we are still relentlessly searching our supermarkets for the elusive pink ribbon products.  Because we are so dedicated and so inquisitive and so intelligent (and because we walked in the doors) we finally found another one!  

Kellogg's Special K!  I purchased the chocolately delight version because it is chocolately!  And because I'm a little bit too old to eat cocoa crispies for breakfast.

There at the bottom of the box was a simple pink ribbon on a field of pink and this logo:

On the back of the box is an inspiring story from a Breast Cancer survivor.  And another pink ribbon.  And a statement that "Prevention is the Key" followed by the encouragement to do self exams and get yearly mammograms.  

I hate to be a nitpicker but that would technically be 'early detection' rather than 'prevention'. 

There is also a statement that "Knowing is Half the Battle".  Yada yada yada, check out side panel to get started today.  So I checked out the side panel.  Apparently my chocolatey wheat flakes contain wheat and milk.  Maybe they meant the other side panel.  

Here we go.  Another pink ribbon.  And the encouragement to
"Become Part of the Search for a Cure."
 There are four things I can do to do my part.  I can donate and participate in one of the "many great organizations".  I can "Be a friend" and lend my ear to a loved one facing breast cancer.   (this here is me refraining from making snide comments about how I had planned to shun and ignore my loved ones)  

Kellogg's also recommends
"Show Your Support".
 Which means,
"Buy Pink Ribbon Products to help raise funds for research and show that you care."
And finally I can
"Speak Out".
  Okay I am already donating and participating.  I would like to think I am being a friend.  I guess you could call what I do speaking out.  So let's address the "Show your support"

"Buy pink ribbon products to help raise funds. . . ."  
So can I assume that buying this pink beribboned chocolatey delight will raise funds for research?  One would think so but there is noting on the box, or in the box, or printed on the little chocolatey pieces that says anything one way or the other.  I was going to look closer at the flakes to see if the information was there but I was afraid I would see a religious image and then that would be a whole different story!

I know!  I'll visit the Kellogg's website and learn more.  Nope - not a word!  No pink ribbons.  Nothing.  So I go to the Special K site.  Nothing.  I go back to the box and pore over it more closely.  There at the bottom of the inspirational story is a web address "For more inspiring stories".   I don't want more inspiring stories - I want to know how buying this box of cereal is going to help anything.  But since this link is all I have I go there.

Finally!  We have some serious pink!  Isn't this pretty?

First thing - apparently this is not just a Kellogg's thing; it is a Kroger Grocery Store thing.  Okay, let's find out how much money is being donated and where exactly it is going!  

With the help of key vendor partners who share our commitment to eradicating this cancer – and providing support to those who face it – the Kroger family of stores once again will be Giving Hope A Hand by investing $3 million for breast cancer awareness, treatment and research in the communities we share.


Funds raised by the annual cause-marketing campaign will assist dozens of local organizations fighting breast cancer in our communities across the country – supporting research projects, funding mammograms and educational outreach, and assisting local support groups for women and families. All of the funds are spent in the communities where our customers and associates live and work.

Hmmmn?  They aren't exactly making it easy here.  I want to defend companies who do nice things.  I am very trusting of both their motivations and their actual contributions.  I'm trying here, Kellogg's and Kroger, and you give me vague words like awareness?  

Technically that means you can use part of that 3 million to print your boxes since the pink ribbon and the inspirational story would constitute 'awareness'.  I don't think you would do that - that would be tacky and exploitative and just plain wrong - but you don't give us any specifics and the more cynical people are going to wonder!  

So apparently the act of purchasing this product does not raise any more money than not buying it since the three million is already dedicated.  But buying this box does "show that you care."  Show who?  I'm sorry but this is the sort of pablum that gives the anti-ribbon folks so much ammunition.  I believe that Kroger is motivated by more than just the profits available in Cause Marketing but they really and truly should do a better job of presenting it!

I feel so bad bashing the people that make me feel healthy having chocolatey delight for breakfast.  Maybe I can find something nice to say about the "Sharing Courage" website.  

It's pretty.  And I adore this font:

And the stories of the women are inspiring.    I would just have liked the stories better if each one wasn't "proudly sponsored" by pepsi or special k or keebler or maxwell house.  

Finally, there is a feature on this site that allows one to send a ribbon to a friend or loved one.  The ribbon is nice and as I stated earlier I love the font.  Here is a line from the site:

Breast cancer affects us all, in one way or another. You can join us in the fight against breast cancer by sending our pink ribbon of support to someone who inspires you. Include a personal message or just send a simple "thank you" for their courage and inspiration. Together, we're making a difference, one ribbon at a time.

And here is the default message that goes to the person you are sending a ribbon to:

Thank you for inspiring me. You’re in my thoughts. Please visit to see more inspiring stories.

And finally here is an interesting little disclaimer:

I understand that my personal message will only be delivered to the recipient and will not be posted publicly on the site. However, the recipient’s first name, city and state (if provided) WILL be publicly displayed on the site and will be viewable to anyone who visits the site.

So there you have it. I am neither recommending or not recommending this product.  I hate people who criticize other peoples' efforts to help the world be a better place.  But at the same time I did not find much here I want to praise.  

Have a wonderful day and please give others' the benefit of the doubt whenever possible, no matter how difficult they make it!



1 comment:


Have I told you lately how much I LOVE this blog?!? Still hate the "pink", but that's another story...LMAO

Linda D. in Seattle