General Mills Retro Cereal Boxes

Retro cereal box packaging

Following the Big Head Boxes, General Mills is deploying a new tactic in ongoing battle for cereal dominance. (pardon the metaphor). Retro cereal box designs are appearing on store shelves in Target, and elsewhere.

My initial reaction was one of refreshing surprise — what a pleasant treat for someone like me, who appreciates the aesthetics of yesteryear. But almost immediately after, I found myself puzzled at intent. Since most of these breakfast cereals are aimed at children, I wonder if their effectiveness will be lost on today's youth. Are the kid's of today's ADD generation secretly fans of mid-century retro design? Perhaps the obvious conclusion is that these retro designs are aimed at adults who would otherwise not buy anything promoted by a cartoon rabbit.

Trix: Retro and Current
Trix: Retro and Current designs. What a difference 40 years can make.

Along with these four pictured cereals, (Lucky Charms, Honey Nut Cheerios, Cocoa Puffs, and Trix), we're seeing Kix, Wheaties, and Golden Grahams dusting off vintage packaging.

Additional Photos after the jump.

Kix retro packaging

Wheaties and Golden Grahams retro packaging

There is also a regular Cheerios box floating around out there somewhere.

While I enjoy the notion of retro packaging, I have to shake my head at the thoroughly modern (and eternally annoying) promotion bugs on the face of the box. Couldn't we offer the T-Shirt using a side panel? Or at least design within the overall style of art direction? That part stands out as an anachronism if ever there was one.

General Mills aren't the only ones getting into the retro packaging craze. Remember Pepsi and Mountain Dew retro packaging?

Thanks to Allan Peters and YumSugar for the images, and commentary.