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StoryFebruary 4, 2022

How Is Your Favorite Post Breakfast Cereal Made?

The process behind how Post breakfast cereal is made

Wondering how your favorite breakfast cereal is made? Whether it’s a bowl of Grape-Nuts® cereal, PEBBLES™ cereal, or another Post® classic, we’re breaking down the five-step process that goes into making our iconic cereals and ensures they reach your kitchen safely and of the highest quality – from responsibly sourcing ingredients to carefully following each step of the cooking process, efficient transportation and beyond.

Discover how our cereal is made in five steps:

  1. Our Commitment to Safety
  2. Sourcing Our Ingredients
  3. Our Cooking Process
  4. Our Sustainable Packaging Process
  5. Transporting Our Cereals to Your Local Grocery Store

1. Our Safety Manufacturing Standards

Every bowl of Post® cereal begins with our team and their commitment to safety and quality assurance. The policies and procedures we have in place at all our corporate offices and manufacturing plants are taken very seriously, so employees are kept safe at all times and customers can safely enjoy their favorite cereals.

Adhering to Environmental, Health and Safety Laws:

We hold ourselves and suppliers to the highest industry standards to ensure consumer safety when enjoying our cereals and snacks, such as adhering to environmental and health laws required by the FDA and OSHA. This ensures employees work in a safe environment free from hazards. 

Ensuring a Clean Workplace:

Our team consistently sanitizes at all locations to ensure a safe and clean workplace. In addition, cleanliness practices must be followed by employees such as washing hands before making cereal and changing into clean uniforms before beginning to work.

Food Safety Protocol:

Our cereals are made under several safe processes, such as testing cereals that are gluten-free (according to the FDA’s standard) before adding the label and delivering to your local grocery store.

2. How Our Cereal Ingredients Are Sourced

Our cereal ingredient sourcing process prioritizes quality and responsibility.

Several of our ingredients are sourced from the U.S., though many of our oats for cereals like Honey Bunches of Oats® come from our neighbors in Canada. Post only sources from suppliers committed to sustainable farming and the Global Food Safety Initiative.

We also ensure to provide a variety of non-GMO, gluten-free, and heart-healthy ingredients, so those with all lifestyles and dietary needs can enjoy our flavorful cereals. 

3. The Cereal Cooking Process

Post cereals are made from five main ingredients – wheat, corn, oats, sugar and rice. From there, we add our unique flavors you know and love, vitamins, and minerals. Finally, marshmallows and other add-ins are added to cereals with exciting shapes like Malt-O-Meal® Marshmallow Mateys®.

We cook our cereals by following three steps:

    • Mix Main Ingredients Together: Key ingredients such as oats and corn are poured into a hopper or mixing kettle. From there, we add water and steam.
    • Give Cereal Pieces Their Shape: This is where the magic happens! Flakes in cereals such as Honey Bunches of Oats® are created by flattening corn pieces between two large mills. Shredded cereals like Shredded Wheat are made by taking small wheat berries and running them through shredding mills, turning them into stringy pieces.
    • Size and Add Flavors to Cereals with Other Ingredients: After shaping our cereals, we dry or puff the cereal to its desired size. From there, we add sugar, vitamins, and additional flavors or ingredients like granola, fruits, nuts, and marshmallows.

4. Our Eco-Friendly Packaging Process

As a leading breakfast cereal company, we hold a critical role in protecting the environment and those that fill it. One of the most impactful ways we promote sustainability through our day-to-day activities is by creating eco-friendly, recyclable packaging for our cereals and products and cutting packaging material use by more than 2 million pounds. Learn more about our recent measurable impact in our Environmental, Social and Governance Report.

Post cereal comes in two different types of packaging ­– boxes and our popular resealable bags used for cereals like Malt-O-Meal®. We also strive to improve the sustainability of the bags that are found in our cereal boxes each year.

Our cereal boxes are made from recycled paper materials. Paper packaging material use was cut by 930,000 pounds in 2020 and is a current priority as we continue to work towards more sustainable operations.

Our cereal bags use less materials than boxes, as we reduce the amount of plastic film in the bags found in our cereal boxes each year – which has contributed to cutting plastic use by more than 1 million pounds since 2019.

How can you help make a positive impact? We encourage cereal fans to recycle cereal boxes according to their local recycling program rules. You can also think outside the box with creative DIY projects.

The Journey from Our Plants to Your Cereal Bowl

The cereal transportation process from our kitchen to your grocery store is a lot quicker than you would expect!

 Your bowl of Post® cereal begins at one of our 10 manufacturing plants across the U.S. and Canada. Then, our truckloads of cereal will travel to one of our eight distribution centers:

      • Sparks, Nevada
      • Salt Lake City, Utah
      • Northfield, Minnesota
      • Wilmington, Illinois
      • Byhalia, Mississippi
      • Groveport, Ohio
      • Atlanta, Georgia
      • York, Pennsylvania

Once delivered to one of our distribution centers, our cereals are then sent to a variety of large retailers like Target and big box stores like Costco.

Sustainable Transportation Methods

As a player in the cereal space, it’s on us to ensure we safely and sustainably transport cereals from our facilities to your local grocery stores. Here are some of the practices we follow and programs we are part of that help us reduce our carbon footprint:

      • Strategically placed distribution centers for more fuel-efficient routes
      • Joined SmartWay, an EPA program that helps advance supply chain sustainability through efficient transportation
      • Use advanced fuel-saving technologies such as electric terminal tractors and reducing freight transportation emissions

Just like that, you’re now a pro at understanding the ins and outs of how cereal is made! Take your cravings for knowledge a step further and learn about the nutritional value of cereals, such as which vitamins and minerals often appear in our cereals, nutritional and health benefits from ingredients like fiber and whole grains, and more.