NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- BMO Capital Markets ( BMO) has downgraded Kellogg ( K) to market perform from outperform on concerns about Kellogg's slower cereal sales growth.

BMO has a $59 price target for Kellogg stock.

Limited core brand growth and less impactful product innovation are among the reasons that BMO cites.

BMO also writes in its note to investors that Kellogg's return to a more traditional earnings algorithm -- or more growth from margin expansion or cost savings and less from sales growth -- could also limit its valuation.

Nevertheless, BMO maintains a long-term view of Kellogg's stellar business model, ability to realize $1 plus billion of cost savings over the next three years and reliable earnings per share growth. BMO points out that Kellogg has been in step with the S&P 500's 25% appreciation since the summer of 2009, as Kellogg's valuation has increased to 15 times 2010 earnings per share.

Kellogg stock is up slightly at $53.90, up 0.2%.

A handful of other food stocks have made some advances ahead of the closing bell Monday.

General Mills ( GIS) has risen 0.6% to $70.90. ConAgra Foods ( CAG) is up 1.8% to $25.10 and Kraft ( KFT) has risen 0.7% to $30.60.

-- Reported by Andrea Tse in New York


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