Trix is a brand of breakfast cereal made by General Mills in Minneapolis, Minnesota, for the North American market and by Cereal Partners (using the Nestlé brand) elsewhere in the world. The cereal consists of fruit-flavored, sweetened, ground-corn pieces.
Trix, when introduced in 1955 by General Mills, was composed of more than 46% sugar. The original cereal included three colors: “Orangey Orange” (formerly named Orange Orange), “Lemony Yellow”, and “Raspberry Red”. Five fruit shapes and colors were added over the years: “Grapity (or grapey) Purple”, (1984), “Lime Green” (1991), “Wildberry Blue” (1998–2007), and “Watermelon” (1999). In 1991 and again in 1995, the cereal pieces were given a brighter, more colorful look. General Mills’ Yoplait division produces a Trix-branded yogurt marketed to children with sweetened fruit flavors such as “Watermelon Burst”. Later, Trix Swirls were introduced, with flavors such as “Rasp-orangey orange swirl” (a mix of the Orangey orange and Raspberry red flavors). A new flavor, “Wildberry Red Swirl”, was introduced in 2011. Trix Swirls have since been discontinued; and the pieces in the original Trix were changed to their original 2007 flavor and shape lineup in 2014.
The cereal originally used spherical cereal pieces, but in 1991, were changed to puffed fruit-shaped pieces. In 2007, they reverted to their original shape in the United States. However, they maintained the fruit-shaped pieces in Mexico.
In 2015, General Mills announced it would no longer use artificial colors in its cereals, and that Trix would be among the first to change. Trix would go from six colors to four because satisfactory natural alternatives were found for orange, yellow, red, and purple but not blue or green.
Marketing and advertising
Joe Harris created Tricks, the Trix Rabbit — voiced by Delo States, Mort Marshall, and later by Russell Horton — an anthropomorphic cartoon rabbit who debuted in a 1959 Trix television commercial, and who continually attempted to trick children into giving him a bowl of cereal. He was discovered every time; the children would say “Silly rabbit, Trix are for kids” and take back their cereal. These ads sometimes closed with the Trix Rabbit following up the kids’ “Silly rabbit, Trix are for kids!” slogan with “…and sometimes, for tricky rabbits!” (This happened in case he managed to have a taste or he had a secret stash.) The Rabbit originated as a puppet before he was animated. The plight of the Trix Rabbit has drawn comparisons to Sisyphus, a Greek figure who was doomed to endlessly repeat a futile task. He did however succeed in obtaining and eating Trix cereal on occasion, including twice as the result of a box top mail-in contest (1976 and 1980) entitled “Let The Rabbit Eat Trix”. The results of the vote were overwhelmingly “yes”, and the rabbit was depicted in a subsequent commercial enjoying a bowl of Trix. Children who voted received a button based upon their vote in the election. In 1991, Tricks won a Tour de Trix Bicycle Race. At the end of the race, two judges are arguing about whether Tricks should get the prize. In order to decide the fate of the prize, the children are called upon to send in their votes. The result was yes and Trix got the prize.
In commercials from the 1960s, 70s and 80s as well as today, the rabbit was known to disguise himself to get the cereal, employing costumes as diverse as a balloon vendor, a painter and a Native American. One alternate slogan for the cereal was, “Oranges, Lemons, and Grapes I see; the fruit taste of Trix is all for me”. Once, Bugs Bunny helped the rabbit in an attempt to get the cereal.
The rabbit’s popularity led him to appear in commercials for other products, such as a Got Milk? advertisement, where he disguises himself as a man taking Trix from a grocery store.