The annual Gerber Baby contest is underway, where parents nationwide send in photos of their Emmas and Olivias and Olivers in hopes of achieving baby fame
Oh, wait. This year, the prize money has plummeted to $25,000—down from $50,000 in years past—which seems like a low pay rate for using a child’s likeness nationwide, especially given that a third will go to taxes. Gerber generates extensive nationwide media coverage from the contest each year.
We asked Gerber to explain the rate cut, and a spokesperson sent the following statement.
“In the spirit of making the 10th anniversary of Photo Search our best yet, we are not just updating our entry guidelines but also changing up our winner’s prize. The winner’s prize, which will be revealed at the time of the winner’s announcement, will include cash and other valuable gifts and opportunities.”
The company did not respond to a follow-up question about why the contest rules clearly state that the “total value of all prizes” is $25,000.
Last year the contest received 544,000 entries, a substantial portion of the babies in America (3.7 million babies are born in the U.S. each year). This year, entries must arrive between February 5 and February 21, presumably to prevent every baby in America from being submitted. You can see the previous years’ winners in all their adorable chub here.