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Old Apr 22, 12, 9:42 am   #1
 
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Starbucks to stop using 'crushed bug' dye

Strawberries Bugs & Crème Frappuccino?



Not that I recall ever having had it, but it sounds unappetizing nevertheless.
Starbucks to stop using 'crushed bug' dye
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Starbucks Corp. says it will stop using a red dye in its drinks that is derived from crushed bugs.

<snip>

Cochineal dye is widely used in foods and cosmetics products such as lipstick, yogurt and shampoo. Starbucks had used the coloring in its strawberry flavored mixed drinks and foods like the raspberry swirl cake and red velvet whoopie pie.

The company says the items will be reformulated by the end of June.
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Old Apr 22, 12, 10:07 am   #2
 
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Originally Posted by TWA884 View Post
Strawberries Bugs & Crème Frappuccino?



Not that I recall ever having had it, but it sounds unappetizing nevertheless.
You've likely consumed dozens of products using cochineal, crushed beetle powder for want of a better description, during your life. I's pretty common, a little bit goes a long way and it's been price competitive with "synthetic organics", compounds no less potentially toxic (and maybe a lot more toxic, since eating bugs is pretty safe in most cases while wasn't that old "Red Dye #2" that looked to be carcinogenic?).

From the tiny shellfish used to produce the Romans' "Imperial Purple" (not purple in modern eyes) through hundreds of other natural products used as dyes, that's all the we had until the 19th century (and the Germans, IIRC) brought us the magic marvels of modern organic chemistry, any color or flavor you might want from coal tars or crude oil.
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Old Apr 22, 12, 10:20 am   #3
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I had a recipe in some cook book I got nearly 20 years ago. Called for cochineal but I was never able to locate any. The name sounds similar to the french word for lady bug.
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Old Apr 22, 12, 10:20 am   #4
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Old Apr 22, 12, 10:48 am   #5
 
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Interesting.

Starbucks fans are happy the bugs are gone from their stuff while cocktail mavens were bummed out when it was removed from Campari.
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Old Apr 22, 12, 12:07 pm   #6
 
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Originally Posted by TMOliver View Post
You've likely consumed dozens of products using cochineal, crushed beetle powder for want of a better description, during your life. I's pretty common, a little bit goes a long way and it's been price competitive with "synthetic organics", compounds no less potentially toxic (and maybe a lot more toxic, since eating bugs is pretty safe in most cases while wasn't that old "Red Dye #2" that looked to be carcinogenic?).
Even though I don't keep kosher, I generally look for the OU kosher logo and other kashrut certification symbols on packaged goods. That way I can avoid consuming such unappetizing ingredients.

I much prefer Starbucks substitute ingredient, lycopene, a natural, tomato-based extract (source). Why could they not use it originally?
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Old Apr 22, 12, 12:12 pm   #7
 
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cochineal is one of the oldest and safest food dyes out there.
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Old Apr 22, 12, 12:40 pm   #8
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Why could they not use it originally?
It was more expensive at the time
At the time it was not deep red, but more of an orange red (they have worked on that)
It is more stable than lycopene which changes color when exposed to oxygen or light


The vegans can be happy now, no bugs in their drinks. The nightshade freaks are probably getting their petitions ready now.
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