Were you a Lunchables kid? I think some of my Sunkist Elementary classmates shared some with me one, and I didn't particularly care for it. In fact, I thought that the class prepackaged lunch for kiddies had gone the way of coonskin caps, replaced by federally funded lunches, browbeating bureaucrats, and an army of moms prepared with peanut butter-and-jelly sandwiches or burritos wrapped in foil.
But, as with most things, I was wrong.
AdvertisingAge just did a story on the return of Lunchables. After years of getting written off by food-trend watchers, 2010 was their best year ever, with sales approaching $600 million (!), and the brand (owned by Kraft) planning to launch a $20 million campaign that will see it publish a six-page ad spread in People and take over all the digital screens around Times Square.
Really? For bologna and crackers? Are American parents that hard-up for time that they throw those packages at kids? Man, my lower-working-class mami worked the early morning (like, 5 a.m. early) shift at the old Hunt-Wesson tomato cannery in Fullerton and still found enough time (and pesos) to send her kids off to school with fresh lunches. So it is…