Cereal giant falls on lower year forecast

General Mills via Associated Press
Retro images of boxer Muhammad Ali and Olympic gymnastics champion Mary Lou Retton are shown on new Wheaties boxes. Olympic decathlon winner Bruce Jenner is also featured.

General Mills Inc., the maker of Cheerios, reduced its earnings forecast for its current fiscal year as weak demand and rising costs squeeze food producers. Profit for 2012 will be up to $2.55 a share, the Minneapolis company said. Previously, it forecast up to $2.61. Analysts projected $2.60. The company said “weak volume’’ across US retail food categories in December and January hurt third-quarter results.