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General Mills CEO Steve Sanger '68 on "Culinary Illiteracy"

April 15, 2006

steve sanger 2005.jpgApril 15, 2006, Greencastle, Ind. - "At a conference last December, Stephen Sanger, chairman and chief executive of General Mills, described the kind of e-mails and calls the company gets: The person who didn't have any eggs for baking and asked if a peach would do instead, or the man who railed about the fire that resulted when he followed instructions to grease the bottom of the pan -- the outside of the pan," notes the Washington Post. Sanger, a 1968 graduate of DePauw University, is cited in a story that describes how "food companies are dumbing down recipes, and cookbooks are being published with simple instructions and lots of step-by-step illustrations."

Candy Sagon writes, "When the country's top food companies want to create recipes that millions of Americans will be able to understand, there seems to be one guiding principle: They need to be written for a nation of culinary illiterates. Basic cooking terms that have been part of kitchen vocabulary for Cooking Clip Art.gifcenturies are now considered incomprehensible to the majority of Americans. Despite the popularity of the Food Network cooking shows on cable TV, and the burgeoning number of food magazines and gourmet restaurants, today's cooks have fewer kitchen skills than their parents -- or grandparents -- did."

Read the complete story at the Web site of the Charlotte Observer.

Steve Sanger received an honorary Doctor of Letters degree from his alma mater in May 2004 and the Diversity CEO Leadership Award in October of that year. Read more in this previous article.

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