The artwork in question features animated yellow Corn Pops characters enjoying a day at the mall. Some are shopping and visiting an arcade, while others are swimming in the mall’s fountain and skateboarding down the escalator. While looking at the drawing, Ahmed noticed that the sole brown Corn Pop in the picture is donning janitorial clothing as he cleans the floor of the mall.
He tweeted the picture to the Michigan-based company, writing “hey @KelloggsUS why is literally the only brown corn pop on the whole cereal box the janitor? this is teaching kids racism.” He followed his post up by stating that “yes its a tiny thing, but when you see your kid staring at this over breakfast and realize millions of other kids are doing the same…”
— Saladin Ahmed (@saladinahmed) October 24, 2017
Kellogg’s responded to his complaint hours later via Twitter, stating that the cereal giant is “committed to diversity & inclusion.”
The company stated on Twitter: “We did not intend to offend – we apologize. The artwork is updated & will be in stores soon.”
Ahmed said he “genuinely appreciate the rapid response” in a subsequent tweet.
The brand gaffe has gotten mixed responses from consumers on Twitter. One user wrote that they were “about to dismiss this as oversensitivity” until taking a closer look at the picture.
— videoflyer (@videoflyer) October 26, 2017
Others simply wondered why the brown Pop is the only one wearing clothes and working.
— Moses Ramirez (@moramajama) October 26, 2017
Is it me or does the Janitor look like the only responsible "Corn Pop", at a nudist colony who isn't stoned? #CornPops
— April (@speakout_april) October 26, 2017