Kevin Fischer is a veteran broadcaster, the recipient of over 150 major journalism awards from the Milwaukee Press Club, the Wisconsin Associated Press, the Northwest Broadcast News Association, the Wisconsin Bar Association, and others. He has been seen and heard on Milwaukee TV and radio stations for over three decades. A longtime aide to state Senate Republicans in the Wisconsin Legislature, Kevin can be seen offering his views on the news on the public affairs program, "InterCHANGE," on Milwaukee Public Television Channel 10, and heard filling in on Newstalk 1130 WISN. He lives with his wife, Jennifer, and their lovely baby daughter, Kyla Audrey, in Franklin.
Childhood obesity rates have tripled since the 1970s.
News bulletin: Guess what’s to blame?
Because the Oreo is the world's best-selling cookie, and because Kraft is seeking to break the billion-dollar mark in sales, and because Oreo markets to that end, the popular sandwich snack is under heavy scrutiny in this health-conscious age.
Even Kraft’s own brain trust struggles with how to proceed.
"Companies are being forced to consider a business decision: What can you do to react responsibly to health concerns of a nation that's caught in the throes of an obesity epidemic versus what do you do to promote growth of your market share?" asked Dr. James Gavin, former president of the Morehouse School of Medicine and a Kraft adviser.
The case of the guilt’s comes after an all-out assault began in 1996 to flood the market and rocket Oreo to unheard of heights.
An aggressive campaign sought to put Oreos in every vending machine, restaurant and convenience store. The cookie’s image was plastered on kids’ pajamas so that even when they were in their bedrooms, little ones had visions of cookies, not sugar plums dancing in their heads.
Fisher-Price developed the Oreo Matchin' Middles game. Mattel manufactured the Oreo School Time Fun Barbie. Restaurants offered Oreo toys, place mats and goodie bags. "The ABC's of Marketing to Kids," a Nabisco advice booklet for restaurateurs, instructed them to sprinkle Oreo pieces on applesauce or give free Oreo desserts to kids who showed impressive report cards. Wal-Mart Stores held Oreo-stacking contests for kids. To let employees know how important this was, Wal-Mart beamed to its stores a video of its CEO stacking Oreos. There was even an, “Oreo Cookie Counting Book," joined later by website video games.
The Oreo is now being penalized because of its success. Critics say the Oreo is so loved by so many that it shoulders responsibility that our kids are too fat.
Parents are buying into the argument.
The Chicago Tribune reports:
Health concerns started weighing down the Oreo. Particularly worrisome for Kraft were once-loyal customers such as Laura Mercado. The North Riverside mom cut her family's Oreo purchases in half.
"The trans fat gave it bad publicity," she said. "I slowed down because of that."
Critics continued to hold up Oreo marketing as a symbol of America's unhealthy relationship with junk food. In Senate speeches on the obesity epidemic last year, Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) lambasted "The Oreo Cookie Counting Book" as a gimmick that imprints brand loyalty on unknowing preschoolers.
"That will have little kids associate learning, associate getting better and progressing with eating Oreo cookies," Harkin said of the book.
The unprecedented announcement came last January. We hear you, Kraft said, reassuring those suspicious that its ads were contributing to America's obesity epidemic. No longer would Kraft pitch its most fattening foods on SpongeBob SquarePants and other kiddie hits.
"We talked to mothers who were buying products for their kids," Kraft CEO Roger Deromedi said in an interview. "Consumers had told us, `We would like you to restrict your advertising of the products that you sell to kids.'"
This is pure nonsense.
It’s the cookie equivalent of gun control.
We are being force fed a campaign that Oreo ads that lead kids to want Oreos and then eat them are causing the nation’s youngsters to become obese.
Apparently Mommy and Daddy are complete dunces with no minds of their own. When their kids see a commercial and scream for Oreos, BAM, it’s off to the store, and here you go, kid, eat to your heart’s content.
Too much TV and computer time?
Nahh, that couldn’t lead to obesity.
Not enough exercise?
Let’s get serious.
IT’ S THE DEADLY OREO, STUPID!
And the Double Stuff Oreo……….I shudder at the thought of how destructive those can be.
Get a grip, America.
It’s not the Oreo, or the Big Mac, or hot dogs or nachos or Doritos or pizza.
It’s lifestyle choices individuals make.
So do not refrain from eating an Oreo because some PHD who just attended a conference says they’re bad for you.
Take that baby and unscrew it or dunk it or shove it in all at once or whatever you like to do with it.
Feeling guilty about Oreos is for wimps.
PREVIOUS CULINARY NO-NO’S
1) Ketchup on a brat
2) Green peppers on pizza
3) The dirty martini
4) Fruity brats
5) A Bloody Mary after dinner
6) Women “manning” the grill
7) Eating pizza at Festa Italiana, brats at German Fest, or tacos at Fiesta Mexicana. (Be adventurous. You can have those items anytime).
8) Eating a cream puff as though it was a hamburger.
9) Taking your own bottle of sauce when invited to a barbecue.
10) Touching the grill if you’re a guest at an outdoor barbecue.
11) Coaching the host on how to grill.
12) Some regional flavored ice cream…..like black licorice.
13) Taking the husks off before you grill corn on the cob
14) Being afraid to chill red wine
15) Pizza on the grill
16) When serving exotic or strange dishes to guests, do not tell them exactly what it is. Instead, use a more inviting term (caviar) rather than being blunt (fish eggs).
17) In late summer and early fall, this time of year, don’t buy zucchini. Somehow, someway, you will find zucchini or zucchini will find you.
18) Showing disrespect to your restaurant server.
19) Eating out on a Monday night.
20) Pumpkin beer.
21) Mail-order turkey.
22) Grilled cheese is just for kids.
23) Dining in the dark.
24) Ketchup on spaghetti
25) Sneaking healthy foods into treats to get your kids to eat it.
26) Do not throw away culinary gifts received in the mail because you don’t like them.