Since 1931, the Gerber baby food baby has been one of the world's most familiar and ubiquitous trademarks.

This year's Gerber spokesbaby is extra-special, he is 18-month-old Lucas Warren from Dalton, Georgia, and he has Down syndrome.

Lucas was chosen from 140,000 entries from across the country, all happy and beautiful and deserving, Gerber said.

But Gerber CEO Bill Partyka said Lucas' "winning smile and joyful expression won our hearts this year." 

2018 Gerber Spokesbaby Lucas is seen in September 2017 in Dalton, Georgia. The photo was released to Reuters on Feb. 7, 2018. /Reuters

Along with a $50,000 prize, Lucas will appear on Gerber social media channels throughout 2018 and, as his mother Courtney says, "spread joy, not only to those he interacts with, but to people all over the country... individuals with special needs have the potential to change the world, just like our Lucas."

The original Gerber baby, whose sketch has appeared on jars and boxes since 1931, is Ann Turner Cook, who recently turned 91.

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