MINNEAPOLIS — More than 10% of U.S. Hispanics are unfamiliar with American holidays like Halloween and Thanksgiving, according to a survey commissioned by General Mills and conducted by Synovate Market Research. Conducted in August, the survey polled 500 U.S. Hispanics at various levels of acculturation. Most Hispanics (65%) would welcome learning more about the holidays as a way of improving their lives. The survey comes at a time when General Mills is running a Hispanic-focused outreach program designed to help Latina moms better navigate the acculturation process. Called “Que Rica Vida” (“What a Rich and Wonderful Life”), the program revolves around a series of grassroots activities each year, as well as a free, quarterly Spanish-language magazine and a website, www.quericavida.com, filled with tips and information on such topics as health, education, meal occasions and holiday celebrations. “We believe familiarity with basic cultural traditions, such as holidays, constitutes an accurate indicator of a community’s or an individual’s level of acculturation,” said Rudy Rodriguez, General Mills’ multicultural marketing director. “In that regard, this study’s findings will greatly assist us in executing our overall Hispanic strategy, as well as in identifying those areas of everyday life on which we need to continue focusing.” To help Los Angeles-area Hispanics celebrate Halloween, General Mills partnered with the nonprofit Lucille Beserra Roybal Youth & Family Center to celebrate the occasion with a celebrity-judged costume contest, pumpkin carvings, holiday cookie decorations and photo opportunities with such well-known General Mills equity characters as “Buzz the Bee.” An Easter bash in Houston is also planned.
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