New Gerber Baby For 2023 Has Been Revealed & She's A Rainbow Baby With Veteran Parents

Jul 13, 2023 by apost team

Gerber has been a household name since 1927, and its baby food products are loved by the world over. Created by Daniel Frank Gerber, the brand is recognized instantly by an iconic sketch of a baby on its logo. 

Ann Turner Cook, an accomplished mystery writer and an English teacher, turned out to be the original, world-famous Gerber baby. Her sketched image has appeared on the brand's baby food jars and other products for nine decades after it won a brand contest in 1928. 

Since 2011, Gerber has held photo contests on who will be the next Gerber Baby spokesperson. Selected from more than 200,000 candidates, the company carefully chooses who they will introduce as the new spokesperson annually. 

95 years later, Gerber reached a new milestone when they chose 10-month-old Madison "Maddie" Mendoza, the daughter of Crystal, a dentist, and Jun Mendoza, an Air Force doctor and lieutenant colonel.

In an interview on TODAY, the couple said that their daughter was more than just a cute face. In fact, they revealed that when Maddie was born, she had trouble breathing and needed supplemental oxygen. Some nights after, Maddie tore the tubes after deciding she had enough oxygen and breathed perfectly fine.

"She was able to tell us when she was ready to go home," Jun told the show. "That kind of aligned with her adventurous, independent spirit." 

Aside from being a meek baby, the couple also disclosed that at a young age, Maddie's palette is already advanced for her age. Befitting for her new role as a taste-tester, the little kid had already tasted sea urchin and kimchi, which they said that she was not a fan of, despite being from an Asian family. 

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Born to first-generation American parents, Maddie's roots can be traced back to the Philippines. Her parents, Jun and Crystal, grew up in the Philippines, but they decided to return to the US. Both of Jun and Crystal's parents were actually Navy Veterans. 

In an interview on TODAY, the couple said that it means a lot to them to have Maddie representing military children, especially since, most often, their sacrifices go unseen. 

"We are supporting them and there for them, and acknowledge what they go through," Jun added.

In an exclusive interview with People Magazine, Crystal gushed about how the added element on this year's Photo Search got her more interested. 

"I liked that there was a throwback aspect to it. I was going through my old photos and happened to find one where I was wearing a very similar outfit to what Maddie was wearing," she said of the similar photo she found of her young self looking exactly the same as her daughter. 

The couple felt "surreal" knowing that baby Maddie was selected. It was also revealed that Maddie was a "rainbow baby," a child born after a pregnancy loss."

"It feels like a dream because we thought it was a one-in-a-million shot that Maddie would be chosen as the Gerber baby. We're really grateful for this opportunity and excited for the world to meet Maddie."

Aside from being the Gerber Baby for 2023, Maddie was also named "Chief Growing Officer." She also gets to take home a new wardrobe from the company's own clothing line, a year's supply of Gerber products, and a $25,000 cash prize. The company is also donating $25,0000 to March of Dimes' maternal and infant health programs and $5,000 to Operation Homefront, an organization that supports military families like the Mendozas.

Isn't Baby Maddie the cutest? What can you say about her? Wasn't she brave to overcome all those challenges when she was born? Let us know, and pass this on to your family, friends, and other loved ones out there! 

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