“Follow my nose! It always knows!”
This is the famous statement that Toucan Sam shouts out as he searches for the fruit-filled cereal he loves, Kellogg’s Froot Loops. Since 1963, he’s been the advertising mascot for cereal kids continue to enjoy.
In the original commercials, Toucan Sam spoke the strange language of Pig Latin, and the phrase “OOT-fray OOPS-lay” can be seen on vintage Froot Loops articles. Soon after, he began to speak English with the British accent we are familiar with today.
Some people believe Toucan Sam is a cartoon version of the Keel-billed Toucan. This funny bird has a very colorful beak, and fruit is a mainstay of its diet. This seems to fit the traits of Toucan Sam, for he has stripes of color on his beak and the ability to smell fruit from far away.
Originally, Toucan Sam had a long beak with two large pink stripes, a yellow stripe, and a small black tip. He also had grey, blue and white feathers, and wore a towering hat of fruit on his head. Nowadays, Toucan Sam has blue plumage with a white belly. His fruit hat has completely disappeared, and he also has a shorter beak with a longer black tip and smaller colored stripes. The red, yellow and orange beak stripes represent the original colors of the breakfast cereal.
Over the years more colored loops have been added to the cereal such as green, purple, blue, and gold. There is a debate about whether each loop tastes the same, or if they have different flavors, but according to Kellogg’s they are all the same.
In the television commercials, Toucan Sam is always searching for his favorite fruit-flavored cereal. His fruit-sensing nose seeks out the flavors of Froot Loops Cereal and he can find a concealed box full of Froot Loops easily. In recent years, the story lines have become more complicated, and other characters have been added. In 1994 the character was given three baby toucan nephews – Puey, Susey, and Louis – to watch over. The nephews helped Sam to defeat enemies such as Dr. Peacock and the Nasty Alien Froot Monster.
Nowadays, Toucan Sam and other characters have grand adventures on the Internet at FrootLoops.com, while collectors seek out early Toucan Sam merchandise, like figures, dolls and advertising signs.
Did you eat Froot Loops as a kid? Does the kid in you still love them? Share your Froot Loops and Toucan Sam memories…