Fifty years ago, Americans gathered around grainy, black and white televisions and watched in awe as astronaut Neil Armstrong touched down on the surface of the Moon and uttered these famous words: “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.” To celebrate this giant leap, we are reflecting on the anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon landing and the significant impact it had on the company, and on my work as a Kellogg’s archivist for the past 22 years.
On July 20, 1969, Apollo 11 touched down and put the first man – and cereal – on the Moon. Kellogg provided the crew with Frosted Flakes and fruit-flavored Corn Flakes cereal cubes (developed by Whirlpool) to help ensure astronauts Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins had a delicious breakfast each of their eight days in space.
Meanwhile, down on Earth, Kellogg co-sponsored the broadcast of the landing – with the largest television audience ever recorded at that time, with 93.9 percent of all U.S. households viewing. This moment was publicly commemorated as one of the most momentous events in the long record of man’s explorations of the world and the universe beyond.
Following the Moon landing, Kellogg kicked off the new commercial theme, “Rocket Ahead in ’70.” The rocket age had now fully arrived. This manifested in several ways throughout the years, including the introduction of Apple Jacks “Crater Creatures” from outer space, the “Corny 7” rocket promotion aimed at putting cereal sales “into orbit,” packaging featuring Apollo 11 or other rockets, and several space-themed premiums. Students were encouraged to enjoy a nutritious breakfast with the Kellogg’s “Astronaut Breakfast Game,” enabling kids to compete in the Space Race as teams while they ate delicious breakfast foods. Breakfast lovers everywhere could grow a Moon garden, create “rocket rations” from Corn Flakes, enjoy astronaut ice cream, become “Space Cadets” and assemble and fire their own sonic wave gun.
On the moon, and at the breakfast table, Kellogg’s vision and purpose is to enrich and delight the world through foods and brands that matter and to nourish families so they can flourish and thrive. I’m proud to work for a company committed to revolutionary innovation and to be a part of an important moment in American history.