Kellogg’s has apologized for a social media post that implied it would feed hungry children only if others helped promote their marketing campaign.
The trouble started Saturday, when the cereal company’s British marketing arm urged its Twitter followers to share, or retweet, a post promoting its Give a Child a Breakfast campaign.
“1 RT = 1 breakfast for a vulnerable child,” the tweet read.
Twitter users immediately criticized the company, accusing it of exploiting vulnerable children to promote its brand.
Some social media users suggested Kellogg’s was essentially holding hungry children hostage by depriving them of food unless the campaign was promoted.
“@KelloggsUK: 1RT = 1 breakfast for a vulnerable child” Anyone else find this kinda creepy? Like sayin "Help us advertise or kids go hungry"
— James Wong (@Botanygeek) November 9, 2013
Kellogg’s UK apologized, saying its wording was poorly chosen, and deleted the tweet.
The company also clarified on Twitter that its campaign gives “funding to school breakfast clubs in vulnerable areas.”
According to the campaign’s website, Kellogg’s hopes to donate 2 million breakfast meals to needy children and encourages social media users to share posts about the campaign or purchase specially packaged products.
[Image via Agence France-Presse]