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Natural Food Colorings Offer An Array Of Health Benefits, But Aren’t For All Products

March 18, 2010: 07:09 AM EST
With the trend among health-conscious consumers toward “natural” food colors, food formulators need to be aware that 90 percent of today’s artificial colors can be replaced by naturals. Natural colors fall under FDA’s category of “exempt from certification” and many offer health benefits attractive to nutraceuticals consumers. In fact, the colorant in some fruits and vegetables is often the healthiest feature. Purple, blue and red veggies, for example, get their hues from anthocyanins, powerful antioxidants believed to help lower the risk of heart disease. Red, orange and yellow fruits and vegetables are colored by carotenoids, including lycopene, with strong antioxidant properties. When switching to natural colors, companies need to consider the priorities of their target audience, and be aware that some types of products may not be compatible with particular colors.
R. J. Foster, "Naturally Colorful", Food Product Design, March 18, 2010, © Virgo Publishing, LLC
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