Suppose conversation over the breakfast table has been lagging a bit lately. In that case, you may need to change what you eat, according to a Swedish company that has produced a new cereal intending to get more people talking about periods.
Yes. Those periods.
Intimina, a feminine care company based in Stockholm, has developed “Period Crunch,” a raspberry-flavored cereal whose shapes resemble the entire female reproductive system, to encourage people to talk more about menstruation. Hence, the conversation about women’s monthly cycles becomes normalized. However, the company surveyed more than 2,000 people and found that 48 percent of girls and women are too embarrassed to talk about their period, primarily due to fear of being “period-shamed,” particularly by boys.
Danela Zagar, Intimina’s Global Brand Manager, said, “Periods are normal, and talking about periods should be normal. But because of the ongoing stigma around menstruation, period conversations remain difficult and embarrassing for people, even with loved ones. There’s no more normal and everyday a scene than the whole household sitting down together at the kitchen table and talking over a meal. And if period conversations were truly normalized, then they wouldn’t be off this table — or off any table for that matter.”
The cereal is wheat-based and dyed blood red, and the box is illustrated with a diagram of the female reproductive system to help educate children.
The appearance of the new cereal is timely as Spain became the first European country to propose paid, unlimited leave for women experiencing menstrual pain. Only a few countries across the globe offer menstrual leave, and the list is surprising: South Korea, Japan, Zambia, and Indonesia.
But don’t expect to find the cereal on your supermarket shelves. Intimina will send anyone around the world a free box of Period Crunch if he or she simply contacts the company.
Period crunch… idk. I think chew would be a better description pic.twitter.com/hZQLTfgIlL
— Accidental Mexican (@AccidentalMexi) May 25, 2022
This is not the first new foray into the period industry. In 2019 Daniela Gilsanz released a board game via crowdfunding called “The Period Game,” which teaches participants about what happens to the body during menstruation. It operates much like a traditional board game but differs. It takes you through four delicious stages of the cycle; encountering different PMS symptoms (hopefully bloating, ravenous hunger, and vials of tears/anger aren’t included in the box) and different flows. Naturally, the players’ pieces are shaped like knickers, pads, tampons, and menstrual cups.
There is also a myriad of books targeting pre-pubescent and young teen girls, such as “What Is A Period,” “Welcome To Your Period,” and “First Period Kit For Girls.” But proponents of “Period Crunch” say the conversation should include boys as well, hence the push for breakfast table conversation.
Some within the medical community are happy with the cereal release and see it as a valuable tool to battle period-shaming. Dr. Shree Datta, a gynecologist at King’s College Hospital in London, said she’s delighted Intimina has taken the bull by the horns and developed Period Crunch to help raise awareness of the ongoing social stigma around periods.
Let’s see if Period Crunch takes off and copycat cereals worldwide ensue.