News & Politics

PETA Convinces Nabisco to 'Uncage' their Animal Crackers

This Monday, Aug. 20, 2018, photo shows a box of Nabisco Barnum's Animals crackers. Mondelez International has redesigned the packaging of its Barnum’s Animals crackers after pressure from PETA. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

SJW pettiness strikes again! People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) won a meaningless symbolic victory this week when Mondelez International, the parent company of Nabisco, announced a packaging redesign for “Barnum’s Animals” animal crackers.

The iconic animal cracker packaging featuring circus animals in cages has gone the way of the dodo. In its place, the new boxes will show animals in the wild.

“After more than a century behind bars, the beasts on boxes of animal crackers are roaming free,” the Associated Press (AP) reported. PETA sent a letter to Mondelez in the spring of 2016 demanding the redesign.

“Given the egregious cruelty inherent in circuses that use animals and the public’s swelling opposition to the exploitation of animals used for entertainment, we urge Nabisco to update its packaging in order to show animals who are free to roam in their natural habitats,” PETA said in its letter.

The company yielded to this “pressure” and crafted a redesign. After all, the crackers’ namesake circus — Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey — closed down in May 2017. The 146-year-old circus had removed elephants from its shows in 2016 due to pressure from PETA.

The old cracker packaging featured four panels with a parent and child animal in each separate boxcar cage: lions, polar bears, gorillas, and elephants. The new packaging preserved the red and yellow coloring and the prominent “Barnum’s Animals” logo, but removed the family and boxcar elements. Instead, a zebra, elephant, lion, giraffe, and gorilla walk side by side in grassland — an unrealistic picture if ever there was one.

“When PETA reached out about Barnum’s, we saw this as another great opportunity to continue to keep this brand modern and contemporary,” Jason Levine, Mondelez’s chief marketing officer for North America, said in a statement to the AP.

Illinois, the home of Mondelez, passed a statewide ban on circuses with elephants that went into effect in January. More than 80 U.S. cities have fully or partially banned circuses with wild animals, according to Animal Defenders International.

PETA’s executive vice president, Tracy Reiman, praised the move as a sign of cultural change. “The new box for Barnum’s Animals crackers perfectly reflects that our society no longer tolerates the caging and chaining of wild animals for circus shows,” she told the AP.

The Barnum’s Animals crackers date back to 1902, and box redesigns had so far always been for limited-time special editions.

PETA may claim this as a cultural victory, and it seems many states and cities have listened to their denunciations of animal cruelty. Animals should be treated well, but groups like PETA push animal rights as equivalent to human rights, a dangerous view that minimizes human dignity.

In the end, this all boils down to a marketing change, and it may be smart for Mondelez to pander to the dumb SJW demands on this issue. Once again, liberals have demonstrated that they will complain about the least important issues, and actually achieve change. In April, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, and Twitter banned gun emojis due to gun control pressure.

Perhaps conservatives should voice their concerns a bit more frequently, without descending into this kind of pettiness.