Tuesday, April 15, 2014

From the Cereal Aisle: Undercover Bears Oatmeal

Product: Undercover Bears Oatmeal
Company: General Mills
Years: 1990 - ???

I was never a big oatmeal eater growing up, which is probably why I missed this interesting product from the early 90's: Undercover Bears Oatmeal.

General Mills took the wholesome goodness of oatmeal and the teeth sticking stickiness of gummi bears, combined them, came up with a loveable animal character to be the pitchman, put them in stores, failed to connect on a large scale with kids, lowered prices not once, but 3 times, remained unsuccessful, fired the marketing execs that came up with the idea in the first place, then pulled Undercover Bears from the store shelves, and wept.

I never heard of them until someone posted about them over at Cerealbits.com (check out the site for your fill of retro cereal box goodness!). So I did a little digging, and still didn't come up with much. I was hoping to find a scan of the box, but only found commercial stills and pictures from newpaper ads instead.

Basically, they were gummy bears that were coated in some sort of maple/brown sugar coating and hidden in the oatmeal, so when you the hot water, they bears would magically appear in your bowl!

*actually only amazing to people who are easily amazed, such as kids, and some dumb adults.

These quite possibly were only around for a year, maybe two,  from the little info I could find. So if you remember them, hats off to you my oatmeal loving friends.

Researching these lead me to a lot of gimicky oatmeals from the 80's and 90's I had forgotten about, so I jotted them all down and will be sure to cover more of them here in the future.

Pinky swear.


  1. I remember this well. The commercial totally sold me, and I had to have them. I'm not even sure why, I didn't like oatmeal all that much. Still, I did have them once, and I was completely underwhelmed by both the taste and the "illusion" of appearing bears.

    I hope one of the wacky oatmeals you'll be covering is Oatmeal Swirlers. Yet another "make oatmeal fun" gimmick I fell for.

    1. Oatmeal Swirlers is on my list - Man, the oatmeal lobbyists sure did have a way of hoodwinking kids into buying their stuff.....