Caffeinated Kids, Sugar-Soaked Adults, and Stoned Avocados

This week, we learned:

That teachers are revolting, and it’s got nothing to do with pay and conditions. One of the UK’s largest teaching unions, the NASUWT, is calling for a ban on energy drinks, aka “readily available legal highs”.

Tired teachers can no longer handle the stress of dealing with kids wired on these explosive caffeine/sugar combos. “What’s your problem?” the British Soft Drinks Association asked, sort of, in defence of their financial interests. “Energy drinks and their ingredients have been deemed safe by regulatory authorities around the world,” they continued, convincingly.


The BSA can relax, because sales of energy drinks increased by 185% between 2006 and 2015, and no government do-gooder is going to stop that truck from rolling down the hill. The kids are happy too. According to the Centre for Transitional Research in Public Health in the North East (they’ll go far with that name), children as young as 10 are buying energy drinks because they are “cheaper than water or pop”.


Old fogies unite: we all know that tap water is free, and was good enough for us, back in the day.


Meanwhile, clean eaters who wouldn’t dream of tarnishing their temples with some caffeinated, sugary tat can celebrate a recent development of their favourite food-on-a-pedestal, the avocado.


The spiritual home of this fruit is M&S, naturally. You’d be forgiven for thinking that an avocado is just an avocado, but no, it isn’t. It’s an M&S avocado.


M&S have a thing about avocados. In the past they have given us the super-sized avocado and the mini avocado. They even dreamt up the ready-sliced avocado, for people looking to throw their money away.


Market research has clearly informed them that the quintessential M&S customer has an insatiable appetite for variations on the gilded green lily. So, in response to consumer demand, they have now introduced the cocktail avocado. It’s tiny (and so cute!) and you can eat the skin (so environmental).


Grown in Spain, this little gem is only available during December. No doubt there is someone working on that too. In the meantime, M&S has an agronomist whose top tip for customers is to try the cocktail avocado deep-fried. Pause to digest that ….  M&S has an agronomist?


Crafty old Kelloggs have figured out a way to get round new sugar-limiting rules on cereals targeted specifically at children: call them an adult cereal. That’s what they’ve done with their sugar-saturated Frosties. Genius. The face of Frosties is of course a cartoon tiger (Tony the Tiger!), and what adult doesn’t love a cartoon tiger. Whereas the sugar in child-specific Coco Pops is to be reduced by 40%, and by 20% in Rice Krispies, Tony’s Frosties remains safe from the snip. Grown-up children can relax in the knowledge that they are still on-track to develop chronic ill health, with 11g of sugar per 30g bowl of Frosties. Not so Grrrreat!




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