LOS ANGELES, Calif. – Cinnamon Toast Crunch is already a well-known cereal, but now it’s making headlines for something more salty than sweet — a man has allegedly discovered shrimp tails inside of a box of the cereal while pouring himself a bowl.
According to Los Angeles-based writer and comedian Jensen Karp, he discovered what appear to be shrimp tails tossed in cinnamon sugar, as well as dental floss, black unidentifiable objects, and more inside of a family-pack box of General Mills Cinnamon Toast Crunch cereal.
In a tweet he shared on Monday, he wrote, “Ummmm @CTCSquares - why are there shrimp tails in my cereal? (This is not a bit)”
The post quickly went viral, amassing up over 133,000 likes as of Wednesday morning, and over 13,000 retweets.
General Mills soon responded to the claim via Twitter saying, “We’re sorry to see what you found!” the brand replied. “We would like to report this to our quality team and replace the box. Can you please send us a DM to collect more details? Thanks!”
As the news began trending online, the cereal manufacturer responded to the thread with an additional tweet, explaining: “After further investigation with our team that closely examined the image, it appears to be an accumulation of the cinnamon sugar that sometimes can occur when ingredients aren’t thoroughly blended,” the brand said in a follow-up tweet. “We assure you that there’s no possibility of cross-contamination with shrimp.”
However, this response sparked backlash from Karp himself and thousands of people online. According to many responses on Twitter, the discovery is rather worrisome for those with crustacean allergies, and simply to the general public.
Karp also accused the brand of “gaslighting.” He wrote back, “OK, well after further investigation with my eyes, these are cinnamon coated shrimp tails, you weirdos.
Ok, we’ll after further investigation with my eyes, these are cinnamon coated SHRIMP TAILS, you weirdos. I wasn’t all that mad until you now tried to gaslight me? https://t.co/7DmADmoqUt pic.twitter.com/rSLE60pvoy— Jensen Karp (@JensenKarp) March 22, 2021
Since the correspondence between the comedian and the cereal manufacturer escalated over the span of two days, Karp allegedly discovered more objects inside of the box of Cinnamon Toast Crunch. He tweeted about black objects toasted into multiple cereal pieces, and how his wife, who is actress Danielle Fishell (known for playing the role of Topanga from “Boy Meets World,”) discovered dental floss in another package within the same box.
He tweeted, “For real - someone tell me they aren’t like maggots or bugs. Is it shrimp adjacent? (also just found this weird cinnamon covered pea thing?) I wish this was a joke.”
General Mills issued a statement saying, “We can say with confidence that this did not occur at our facility.”
As of Wednesday morning, General Mills issued a statement directly to Karp, saying, “If you are unwilling to send the items and cereal packaging to us, please provide these items to your local law enforcement.”
While the curious case of the shrimp tails in the Cinnamon Toast Crunch (or, should we say, “Crustacean Toast Crunch),” continues, follow Karp on Twitter for more updates.