Fatima Loves Crunch (and Now I'm a Crunch Fan Too)



            The consolidation of marquee American confectionary brands under the (Italian) Ferrero business banner continues apace. Kellogg being only the most recent to add $1.3 billion to its balance sheet in return for Keebler and some other not so famous ballast sucked from its P&L. While some of us may wonder if the cookies will still be made by elves in hollow trees, we have only to look to the recent past to see how Ferrero treats its orphaned American cousins.

            Consider Crunch (ne Nestle’s). Bigger things are imagined for it than simple indulgence or reward. Where once it might have been the kind of strange distant relation to the ‘big guys,’ Snickers, Mars, M&Ms, Butterfingers, Hershey’s Kisses, Reese’s, et al, Crunch has been re-imagined as that rice within chocolate notion that best exemplifies what? America’s welcoming and nurturing of its diverse citizenry.

See Fatima Jefferson, hijab nonchalantly topping wardrobe choices that include a girl scout uniform. There’s the ponytailed “Sparrowhawk,” well-dressed, metrosexual navigating the urban landscape, too. And, well, “Brad Miller.” He loves dogs. Each loves Crunch. The visual metaphor of crispy rice bathed in luxurious chocolate could not be more clear. Or charming.

            It’s the gentlest possible reminder of the sweetest possible promise: We are a country of sometimes brittle, sometimes brusque, oftentimes bracing, invigorating people within a culture that enrobes us all. We can enjoy the crunch inherent to that shock of disparity within joy. The Crunch. Italian chocolatiers may have a larger message for us than “buy this.” Exciting to imagine what those elves may soon be making for us in those maybe no longer so hollow trees.