Monday, November 25, 2013

Badvertising: Vanilla Cupcake Goldfish Grahams

The ad copy reads,
"Our grahams are made with
no artificial colours or flavours.
Think of it as the icing on the cake.
"
And then down down below,
"Baked with real vanilla extract. How sweet is that?"
So let's look at those claims briefly.

As far as thinking of it as the icing on the cake, I'd like to invite you to do so literally because from a caloric perspective, if you "iced" your cupcake like the one in the photo (where I count 28 grahams suggesting 56 to cover your cupcake) those highly processed Vanilla Cupcake Goldfish Grahams come in at 224 calories. If you were looking for 224 calories worth of actual vanilla icing, you'd need 4.5 tablespoons of Pillsbury Whipped Vanilla Icing (though people don't generally put that much icing on a cupcake).

Sugar wise the icing has significantly more of course, but that's not to say (even though Pepperidge Farm kinda does), that the Vanilla Cupcake Goldfish Grahams get their sweetness from vanilla extract. No, they get their sweetness from sugar and if in fact you did ice your cupcake with them, you'd be getting over 3 teaspoons of it.

To be clear, there are far worse products out there than Vanilla Cupcake Goldfish Grahams, but as opposed to what their ad copy suggests, you should think of them as a cookie-like treat for your kids, and not as health food.

[For those interested, here are the Vanilla Cupcake Goldfish Grahams' ingredients:

WHOLE GRAIN GRAHAM FLOUR, ENRICHED WHEAT FLOUR, VEGETABLE OIL (CANOLA, PALM KERNEL, PALM, SOYBEAN, SUNFLOWER), SUGAR, CORN STARCH, BROWN SUGAR, FROSTING (SUGAR, MALTODEXTRIN, CORN FLOUR, NATURAL FLAVOUR, MEDIUM CHAIN TRIGLYCERIDES, SALT, CREAM, FRUIT AND VEGETABLE JUICE CONCENTRATES FOR COLOUR [RADISH, PUMPKIN, TOMATO, APPLE, SWEET POTATO, CHERRY], SOY LECITHIN), NATURAL FLAVOUR, SALT, SKIM MILK POWDER, SODIUM BICARBONATE, VANILLA EXTRACT, CORN SYRUP SOLIDS, BAKING POWDER.]

[UPDATE: An earlier version had a US ingredient list. Above now is the Canadian version (which would go with the Canadian advertisement]

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