Category Archives: controversial ingredients

Getting controversial ingredients out of our food: Dunkin’ Donuts to stop using whitening agent

Dunkin Donuts To Stop Use of Titanium DioxideWe’re all about cheering on food manufacturers removing controversial ingredients from their offerings. Listening to the consumers who make them profitable is key to retaining their trust and loyalty in competitive market. It’s also their responsibility to take action as we become educated on the effects of those ingredients on our health and well being.

As much as FoodFacts.com wants to challenge those manufacturers and fast food establishments on the use of controversial ingredients, we also want to give credit where it’s due when one of them commits to the removal of an ingredient in their products. Score one more for team better food!

Dunkin’ Donuts, under pressure from an activist group, has agreed to phase out a controversial whitening agent used in the powdered sugar atop some of its doughnuts.

The move wasn’t announced by the doughnut kingpin, but by the advocacy group As You Sow. The group had submitted a shareholder request asking Dunkin’ Brands to reduce the use of titanium dioxide in its powdered sugar. As You Sow officials claim that titanium dioxide is a “nanomaterial” — a substance engineered to have extremely small dimensions, which the advocacy group claims can be toxic to humans.

In a statement, Dunkin’ Brands chief communications officer Karen Raskopf said that the titanium dioxide is not a “nanoparticle” under the Food and Drug Adminstration’s definition, but that Dunkin’ had still agreed to stop using it.

“The ingredient used in our powdered doughnuts does not meet the definition of ‘nanoparticle’ as outlined under FDA guidance,” Raskopf said. “Nevertheless, we began testing alternative formulations for this product in 2014, and we are in the process of rolling out a solution to the system that does not contain titanium dioxide.”

In a second statement, Raskopf said the move was relevant to investors. “Dunkin’ Brands understands that investors are increasingly interested in the sustainability of the companies in which they invest. As part of our ongoing stakeholder engagement process, we recognize the importance of engaging in productive, ongoing dialogues with our investors to understand and address their concerns, as appropriate.”

The move comes at a time when consumers and activist groups are paying closer attention to the ingredients big food makers and sellers from McDonald’s to Subway put in their foods. Last year, Subway agreed to remove a controversial chemical called azodicarbonamide from its bread shortly after one nutritional activist noted the same chemical is used in yoga mats.

As a result of Dunkin’s announcement, As You Sow withdrew the shareholder proposal.

“This is a groundbreaking decision,” said Danielle Fugere, president of As You Sow. “Dunkin’ has demonstrated strong industry leadership by removing this potentially harmful ingredient from its doughnuts.”

We’re pleased to see Dunkin Donuts responding positively to the efforts of As You Sow. FoodFacts.com believes in the power of this trend and is encouraged by the power of action. Moves like this from Dunkin will move another fast food giant to make changes. We’re getting there … one change at a time.

http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/2015/03/06/dunkin-donuts-fast-food-restaurant-food-safety/24524875/

Almost half of all energy drink ads featured on TV channels popular with teens

energy-drink-can-and-lightningFoodFacts.com reports often on energy drinks. We find these beverages especially concerning because of the countless instances where energy drinks have been linked to hospitalization and death. We’re particularly disturbed by the popularity of the drinks among the teenage population. We’ve heard claims from manufacturers time after time stating that their products aren’t meant for teenagers and that they do not target kids with their marketing campaigns. Hmmmm ….

A study published in the Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior has reported that 46% of energy drink advertisements broadcast on television are aired on channels featuring content and themes likely to appeal to teenagers.

Researchers from Dartmouth College, NH, arrived at their findings after examining a database of television advertisements broadcast from March 2012 to February 2013. During this period, across 139 network and cable channels, over 608 hours of energy drinks advertisements were aired.

“Although our results do not support the idea that manufacturers intentionally target adolescents with their advertising, ads for energy drinks were primarily aired on channels with themes likely to appeal to adolescents, and adolescents are likely exposed to energy drink advertising via television,” says lead researcher Jennifer A. Emond.

Energy drinks are beverages containing caffeine and commonly a mixture of other stimulants and energy-giving ingredients. Caffeine content can vary, with concentrations in popular brands ranging from 70 mg per 8 oz serving to 200 mg per 16 oz serving. These amounts are far higher than the average caffeine content of popular soft drinks, which range from 23 to 69 mg per 12 oz.

While the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) generally recognize energy drinks as safe, some experts are concerned about the potential health risks that adolescents can face due to high caffeine intake. Certain adverse health effects are associated with consuming too much caffeine, such as anxiety, sleep disruption and serious cardiovascular events.

At present, the American Academy of Pediatrics advise against energy drink consumption among adolescents, and the American Medical Association registered their support for a ban on the marketing of energy drinks to adolescents alongside the US Senate Commerce Committee in 2013.

Television is highly-watched by adolescents in the US, and the authors of the study describe it as a highly relevant medium for advertising to reach the youth of the nation. Until now, however, little quantitative research has been carried out to investigate the prevalence of energy drink promotion on US television.

The primary target audience of each of the television channels was identified through analyzing audience demographic data from a cable advertising trade group. The researchers identified the 10 television channels that dedicated the most time to energy drink advertising and of these, six included adolescents in their primary target audience.

The six channels were MTV2, ESPN News, FUSE, MTV, ESPN-2 and Black Entertainment Television. MTV2 was identified as the top network and was found by the researchers to have aired 2,959 minutes of energy drink advertisements – around 8.1% of all airtime given to energy drink advertisements.

The proportion of MTV’2 base audience made up of 12-17-year-olds was also found to be 398% greater than that of the average network audience for US television.

“While policies related to energy drink marketing are debated, nutrition educators may wish to include elements of media literacy when advising adolescents and their families about the risks of energy drink consumption,” the authors suggest.

Although it cannot be proven that adolescents specifically viewed these advertisements, Nielsen data have previously indicated that adolescents view more energy drink advertisements than adults on many of the 10 channels identified in this study, including the top network MTV2.

While it can be argued that energy drink advertising appears so frequently on the channels mentioned because the products fit best with sports and risk-taking – popular themes on these channels – previous studies have suggested that energy drinks manufacturers specifically target an adolescent market by associating their products with these themes.

One step the authors suggest that parents can take to help reduce their children’s exposure to energy drink marketing is to try and limit the amount of time they spend watching television.

“Measures of increased television exposure among adolescents (television viewing time, number of televisions in the home, and the presence of a television in the bedroom) have been associated with heavier consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages such as soft drinks, sports drinks, and energy drinks,” state the authors.

In October last year, researchers from the World Health Organization (WHO) claimed that increasing consumption of energy drinks could pose a threat to public health.

FoodFacts.com has some experience with the world of advertising and we’re pretty sure that TV stations that cater to teens are getting more energy drink advertising specifically BECAUSE they’re catering to teens. Demographics are the biggest factor in selecting TV stations for advertisers. The “Popular Themes” on MTV2 of sports and “risk-taking” are in themselves aimed at teens.

Energy drink manufacturers market to teenagers. They do it purposefully. If the teenaged consumer wasn’t important to energy drink sales, their commercials wouldn’t be airing on stations with a predominantly teen demographic.
http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/290452.php

Study links polysorbate 80 and other emulsifiers to Crohn’s disease, colitis

food-additivesWhat’s an emulsifier and why is it used in our food supply? When you prepare a vinaigrette, the oil and vinegar don’t combine. They seem to repel each other. A recipe will tell you to whisk the dressing until emulsification occurs — that would be the combination of the ingredients that repel each other. This happens with ingredients in packaged foods. Some things just don’t mix well and emulsifiers are used to combine them and stabilize the product. Unfortunately there are more than a few controversial emulsifiers. Things like carrageenan and Polysorbate 80 and its cousins 60 and 65 are included in a long list of additives used to bring certain ingredient happily together in a processed food product. Polysorbate 80 is the focus of new research that will definitely be important for some members of the FoodFacts.com community. Read on.

Common additives in ice cream, margarine, packaged bread and many processed foods may promote the inflammatory bowel diseases ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease as well as a group of obesity-related conditions, scientists said on Wednesday.

The researchers focused on emulsifiers, chemicals added to many food products to improve texture and extend shelf life. In mouse experiments, they found emulsifiers can change the species composition of gut bacteria and induce intestinal inflammation.

Such inflammation is associated with the frequently debilitating Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis as well as metabolic syndrome, a group of conditions that increase risk for type-2 diabetes, heart disease and stroke.

Mice were fed emulsifiers diluted in drinking water or added into food, which were found to trigger low-grade intestinal inflammation and features of metabolic syndrome such as blood glucose level abnormalities, increased body weight and abdominal fat weight.

Consuming emulsifiers increased the risk of colitis, mimicking human inflammatory bowel disease, in mice genetically susceptible to the condition, the study found.

Georgia State University microbiologist Benoit Chassaing, whose study appears in the journal Nature, said the effects seen in mice “may be observed in humans as well.”

The study involved two widely used emulsifiers, polysorbate 80 and carboxymethylcellulose. The researchers are planning human studies and are already studying other emulsifiers.

Emulsifiers are used in margarine, mayonnaise, creamy sauces, candy, ice cream, packaged processed foods and baked goods. They can make products like mayonnaise smooth and creamy instead of an unappetizing amalgam of water and oily globules.

A key feature of inflammatory bowel diseases and metabolic syndrome is a change in the gut microbiota – the roughly 100 trillion bacteria that inhabit the intestinal tract – in ways that promote inflammation. In mice given emulsifiers, the bacteria were more apt to digest and infiltrate the dense mucus layer that lines and protects the intestines.

Incidence of inflammatory bowel disease and metabolic syndrome started rising in the mid-20th century at roughly the same time that food manufacturers began widespread emulsifier use, the researchers said.

“We were thinking there was some non-genetic factor out there, some environmental factor, that would be explaining the increase in these chronic inflammatory diseases,” Georgia State immunologist Andrew Gewirtz said.

“And we thought that emulsifiers were a good candidate because they are so ubiquitous and their use has roughly paralleled the increase in these diseases. But I guess we were surprised at how strong the effects were.”

If Polysorbate 80 isn’t on your avoid list, this information is a good enough reason to add it. Carboxymethylcellulose hasn’t been considered controversial, but more extensive studies like this can move it over to that list. We all need to make sure that we stick to our time-consuming label-reading habit every time we shop. Controversial ingredients don’t get less controversial. Over time, science continues to find more damaging effects they’re responsible for. Let’s be good to ourselves and our loved ones and keep controversial additives out of our diets!

http://news.yahoo.com/study-links-common-food-additives-crohns-disease-colitis-191811524–sector.html?soc_src=mail&soc_trk=ma

Controversial ingredients and man’s best friend: Purina sued over chemicals in Beneful dog food

635606545880476174-product-lockup-7FoodFacts.com spends quite a bit of time talking about the health effects linked to a variety of controversial ingredients. We don’t think any of them belong in our food supply and we’re always encouraged when we hear about manufacturers taking steps to remove controversial ingredients from their products. But what about our pets? We’re sure that our community wouldn’t want their furry family members consuming foods with ingredients that are potentially harmful. Now a major dog food manufacturer is being singled out for an exceptionally popular brand and claims of harm and even death from its consumption.

The Nestle Purina pet food company is being sued over ingredients contained in its Beneful product line.

The two ingredients are propylene glycol and mycotoxins.

Propylene glycol is a synthetic liquid compound that absorbs water. It’s also used as a base for deicing solutions – anti-freeze components.

According to the federal Agency for Toxic Substances & Disease Registry: “Propylene glycol is used by the chemical, food, and pharmaceutical industries as an antifreeze when leakage might lead to contact with food. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has classified propylene glycol as an additive that is ‘generally recognized as safe’ for use in food.”

Mycotoxins are naturally occurring fungi.

Some pet owners allege their dogs got sick after eating Beneful.

Angela Witzel, assistant clinical nutrition professor at the University of Tennessee College of Veterinary Medicine, told 10News that Nestle Purina has a good track record of monitoring the levels of those ingredients. She said she sees little risk to pets in eating the food.

“In general, I feel like this lawsuit doesn’t have much basis to it. I personally wouldn’t have any problem with going ahead and feeding my pets the Beneful product,” Witzel said.

Nestle Purina issued a statement that says in part, “First and foremost, there are no quality issues with Beneful.”

It goes on to say, “We believe the lawsuit is baseless, and we intend to vigorously defend ourselves and our brand.”

The company has faced two similar class action lawsuits in recent years. Both have been dismissed by the courts.

Whatever the outcome of this lawsuit, the claims being made against Purina and Beneful are a good reason for all of us who love and care for our pets to be careful about the foods we choose for our pets. We need to read ingredient lists here too, carefully selecting pet foods with better ingredients that will serve our pets’ nutritional needs and keep them safe.

http://www.wbir.com/story/news/2015/02/27/purina-sued-over-chemicals-in-beneful-dog-food/24141635/

Starbucks introduces the new Double-Smoked Bacon, Cheddar and Egg Sandwich

double smoked baconStarbucks continues on its mission of increasing the quantity and variety of its food offerings. Now they’ve introduced another new breakfast sandwich – the Double-Bacon, Cheddar and Egg Sandwich.

Although this sounds quite like a standard bacon, egg and cheese sandwich, it definitely offers a twist. This sandwich is served on what Starbucks is calling a croissant roll — that is a croissant that resembles a bun. Oh, and the bacon is double-smoked.

So is this new offering something you want to pick up for breakfast? Let’s take a look.

Here are the nutrition facts for the sandwich:

Calories:                          540
Fat:                                   32 grams
Saturated Fat:                18 grams
Trans Fat:                       1 gram
Cholesterol:                   220 mg.
Sodium:                          940 mg.

There’s definitely another way that this breakfast sandwich is differentiating itself. It may as well be a burger. The Double-Smoked Bacon, Cheddar and Egg sandwich is really a more upscale take on Burger King’s Bacon, Egg, and Cheese Croissan’wich. Believe it or not, Burger King does a better job with nutrition facts. The Croissan’wich offers fewer calories, less fat, less saturated fat, no trans fat and less cholesterol. Even though its ingredient list is awful, the Croissan’wich fits into that magic “under 400 calorie” breakfast category.

What about the ingredient list for the Double-Smoked Bacon, Egg and Cheese sandwich:

Croissant roll (unenriched wheat flour, butter [cream, natural flavor], water, milk, sugar, yeast, sea salt, eggs), fried egg patty (egg whites, egg yolks, milk, food starch-modified, salt, citric acid), smoked bacon (cured with: water, salt, sugar, sodium phosphate, natural flavor [water, natural flavors], sodium diacetate, sodium erythorbate, sodium nitrite), sharp cheddar cheese (pasteurized milk, cheese culture, salt, enzymes, color added).

The ingredients here aren’t great, but FoodFacts.com has certainly seen worse. The fact is that the nutrition facts tell the story for this sandwich. And it isn’t a compelling story.

We’re not buying this one. Starbucks is going to have to do better.

http://www.starbucks.com/menu/food/hot-breakfast/double-smoked-bacon-cheddar-and-egg-sandwich?foodZone=9999

Attention cola fans: caramel color may put you at risk for cancer

GETTY_12414_SodaFoodFacts.com has had a lot to say about caramel color over the years. The artificial color is quite high on our avoid list for several important reasons. Caramel color can decrease the body’s immune response. People with gluten sensitivities or Celiac disease can experience an allergic reaction to caramel color. It can raise blood pressure. And it has been linked to cancer. There are four types of caramel color and two of the most common types have been proven especially harmful. The problem is that consumers can’t identify the type of caramel color used in any product because manufacturers aren’t required to identify it on ingredient lists. While caramel color is used in thousands of products, sodas are the most common place you’ll find the ingredient.

Thousands of Americans drink soda every day and these individuals do not just increase their sugar intake and their odds of packing unnecessary weight. They also put themselves at risk of developing cancer.

The ingredients of colas and other soft drinks typically include a caramel coloring, which gives these beverages their distinct caramel color.

Unfortunately, some types of this food coloring contain a chemical known as 4-methylimidazole (4-MeI), a potential carcinogen.

Now, an analysis published in the journal PLOS ONE on Feb. 18 has revealed that more than half of Americans between 6 and 64 years old sip amounts of soft drinks per day that could expose them to amounts of 4-MeI that could raise their risks of developing cancer.

Keeve Nachman, from the Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future, and colleagues looked at a previous study conducted by researchers from the Consumer Reports that analyzed the concentration of 4-Mel in 12 brands of sodas and soft drink. They also analyzed the soft drinks consumption in the U.S. using data from the National Health and Examination Survey (NHANES) to estimate the potential cancer risks of soft drinks consumption.

The researchers found that the average soda consumption in the U.S. ranges from a little over 12-ounces(1 can) to almost two and a half cans of soda per day with the biggest consumers being those between 16 and 44 years old. Children between 3 to 5 years old were likewise found to drink soft drinks on a typical day averaging about two thirds of a can.

The researchers said that at the rate at which Americans consume soda, they expect the emergence of between 76 to 5,000 cancer cases in the U.S. over the next seven decades that can be attributed to exposure to 4-MeI alone.
“It appears that 4-MeI exposures associated with average rates of soft drink consumption pose excess cancer risks exceeding one case per 1,000,000 exposed individuals, which is a common acceptable risk goal used by some U.S. federal regulatory agencies,” the researchers wrote.

Nachman said that soft drink consumers get exposed to unwanted and avoidable cancer risks from an ingredient that is added to beverages and other foods for aesthetic purposes and this raises concerns on the continued use of caramel coloring in sodas. The Food and Drug Administration said that it will take a closer look at the use of this artificial coloring in a variety of foods.

Soda is unnecessary in any diet. Skipping the sugar and calories in sugared sodas and the artificial sweeteners in diet sodas, the ingredient lists are laden with chemicals. Caramel color is one of the most popular chemicals in those ingredient lists. Watch for it — not only in sodas, but in a variety of other foods and beverages as well.

http://www.techtimes.com/articles/34580/20150222/caramel-color-in-cola-may-give-you-cancer-time-to-ditch-it.htm

Heinz wants you to spice up that burger — introducing new Sriracha Flavored Ketchup

heinzsrirachaketchupLooking for a little zip with your ketchup? Heinz has just the thing for you — the new Heinz Tomato Kechup Blended with Sriracha Flavor!

It will feature the recognizable taste of ketchup, with an added kick from spicy chili pepper and garlic flavors.

In a press release Joseph Giallanella, Brand Manager of Heinz Tomato Ketchup said: “We are thrilled to announce that Heinz Tomato Ketchup Blended with Sriracha Flavor will join the beloved Heinz Ketchup portfolio.” Giallanella added, “Building off of our successful line of flavored ketchups, fans told us that they would love another bold take on their favorite condiment. The new offering adds a new kick to your favorite foods and recipes, pairing well with cheeseburgers, French fries and hot dogs, and is the perfect flavor boost for chicken and eggs.”

While the flavor may, in fact, add a boost to foods, FoodFacts.com is just as concerned with the ingredients. So, here they are:

TOMATO CONCENTRATE FROM RED RIPE TOMATOES, DISTILLED VINEGAR, HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP, CORN SYRUP, SALT, NATURAL FLAVORING, PAPRIKA EXTRACTIVES

That Sriracha flavor sure sounds good — but where is it in the list?????? Oh that must be what that natural flavoring is all about! And, of course, there’s high-fructose corn syrup.

Heinz, most consumers like to find the actual ingredient flavoring the product in the ingredient list. To find anything else leaves us feeling somewhat ripped off.

Some products sound much better than they actually are. This is one of them.

http://pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/2015/02/10/heinz-unveils-new-sriracha-ketchup-flavor/
http://www.heinzketchup.com/Products/Heinz%20%20Ketchup%20Blended%20with%20Sriracha%20Flavor%2014oz

Wendy’s new Bacon and Blue on Brioche … a bit much for fast food?

WendysWendy’s new Bacon and Blue on Brioche doesn’t sound much like a fast food burger. This limited edition burger attempts to elevate a fast food staple to a gourmet level. But are we really looking for gourmet fast food?

FoodFacts.com isn’t sure about how to answer that. We know what we can answer though — and that’s what are we eating when we order the Bacon and Blue on Brioche.

First let’s take a look at the nutrition facts for the new burger:

Calories:                       650
Fat:                                39 grams
Saturated Fat:             16 grams
Trans Fat:                    1.5 grams
Sodium:                       1290 mg

We’d like to point out that even before we get to the ingredient list, we know we’re not going to be eating this one. The 39 grams of fat and 16 grams of saturated fat are bad enough. But that 1.5 grams of trans fat are 1.5 grams too many.

But let’s take a look at the ingredients and see what we think:

Tomatoes, Spring Mix: Baby Lettuces (red & green Romaine, red & green oak, red & green leaf, lolla Rosa, tango), Spinach, Mizuna Arugula, Tatsoi, Red Chard, Green Chard, Blue Cheese Herb Alioli: Soybean Oil, Water, Blue Cheese (milk, cheese cultures, salt, enzymes), Egg Yolk, Distilled Vinegar, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Salt, Herbs (including rosemary and thyme) And Spices, Garlic (dehydrated), Onion (dehydrated), Shallots, Mustard Seed, Natural Flavors, Potassium Sorbate And Sodium Benzoate (preservatives), Glucono Delta Lactone, Xanthan Gum, Nonfat Dry Milk, Propylene Glycol Alginate, Calcium Disodium EDTA (to protect flavor). CONTAINS: EGG, MILK, Applewood Smoked Bacon: Pork Cured With: Water, Salt, Sugar, Sodium Phosphates, Sodium Erythorbate, Sodium Nitrite, Blue Cheese Crumbles: Blue Cheese (pasteurized milk, cheese cultures, salt, enzymes, penicillium roqueforti), Powdered Cellulose (to prevent caking), Natamycin (to protect flavor). CONTAINS: MILK, ¼ Pound Hamburger Patty: Ground Beef. Seasoned with Salt, Brioche Bun: Enriched Wheat Flour (wheat flour, malted barley flour, niacin, iron, thiamine mononitrate, riboflavin, folic acid), Water, Sugar, Yeast, Buttermilk Powder (whey solids, enzyme-modified butter, maltodextrin, salt, guar gum, annatto and turmeric [color]), Egg Yolks, Butter, Salt, Dough Conditioner (wheat flour, DATEM, contains 2% or less of: silicon dioxide [flow aid], soybean oil, enzymes [wheat], calcium sulfate, salt), Dry Malt, Calcium Propionate, Dough Conditioner (degermed yellow corn flour, turmeric and paprika [color], contains 2% or less of: natural flavor), Egg Wash (eggs, water). CONTAINS: WHEAT, EGG, MILK.

So that confirms it. This one is a no for us. If the Bacon and Blue on Brioche was an effort to elevate the fast food burger, there were better ways to do it.

https://www.wendys.com/en-us/nutrition-info

The new Ben & Jerry’s Cookie Cores are here! Excited?????

fair2They’re out! The new Spectacular Speculous, Peanut Buttah and Boom Chocolatta Cookie Core flavors.

Before we get too excited, FoodFacts.com thought we should get to the “core” of the new Cores. So let’s take a look and see exactly what we’ve got here.

The first one, Spectacular Speculous features Dark Caramel & Vanilla Ice Creams with Speculoos Cookies & a Speculoos Cookie Butter Core. Sounds pretty good. Here are the ingredients that go into it:

Cream, Skim Milk, Water, Liquid Sugar (Sugar, Water), Soybean Oil, Sugar, Egg Yolks, Wheat Flour, Rice Flour, Coconut Oil, Butter (Cream, Salt), Corn Syrup, Brown Sugar, Potato Flour, Cocoa Butter, Molasses, Vanilla Extract, Salt, Sodium Bicarbonate, Spices, Whey Protein Concentrate, Honey, Soy Lecithin, Guar Gum, Caramelized Sugar Syrup, Natural Flavor, Caramel Color, Carrageenan, Vanilla Beans.

Let’s move on to Peanut Buttah which boasts Peanut Butter Ice Cream with Crunchy Peanut Butter Sugar Bits, Peanut Butter Cookies & a Peanut Butter Cookie Core. The ingredients for this flavor as listed on the website are:

Cream, Skim Milk, Liquid Sugar (Sugar, Water), Water, Peanuts, Sugar, Soybean Oil, Egg Yolks, Wheat Flour, Rice Flour, Peanut Oil, Butter (Cream, Salt), Coconut Oil, Potato Flour, Partially Defatted Peanut Flour, Salt, Brown Sugar, Eggs, Whey Protein Concentrate, Natural Flavor, Cocoa Butter, Peanut Flour, Soy Lecithin, Sodium Bicarbonate, Vanilla Extract, Guar Gum, Carrageenan, Milk.

And then we come to Boom Chocolatta with Mocha & Caramel Ice Creams with Chocolate Cookies, Fudge Flakes & a Chocolate Cookie Core. Ingredients for this new core are:

Cream, Skim Milk, Liquid Sugar (Sugar, Water), Water, Sugar, Soybean Oil, Cocoa (Processed With Alkali), Egg Yolks, Butter (Cream, Salt), Coffee Extract, Corn Syrup, Rice Flour, Potato Flour, Wheat Flour, Coconut Oil, Brown Sugar, Vanilla Extract, Salt, Sodium Bicarbonate, Natural Flavor, Cocoa Powder, Soy Lecithin, Eggs, Chocolate Liquor, Cocoa Butter, Milk, Whey Protein Concentrate, Guar Gum, Carrageenan, Milkfat.

Phew. That’s all three of them. And, honestly, we’re kind of glad we held off on our excitement. We’re not thrilled with natural flavor, carrageenan or caramel color. And those ingredients are showing up pretty consistently here.

Yeah, we know it’s Ben & Jerry’s. So we know that once in a while, even some of the most nutrition-conscious folks ARE going to indulge. Just thought you should know anyway!

http://www.benjerry.com/flavors/cookie-cores

Baskin-Robbins’ new Icing on the Cake flavor … we’re not sure this is actually ice cream

landingPortraitConesHave your cake and lick it too. Cake flavored ice cream with cake pieces, frosting bits, and candy confetti ribbon.

That’s how Baskin-Robbins is promoting its new Icing on the Cake flavor on their website.

We’ve got to be honest with you. FoodFacts.com isn’t really certain that this can actually be classified as ice cream. We don’t know that we’ve encountered an ice cream product that contains 72 ingredients. Some of the most interesting flavors of ice cream available don’t contain anything close to 72 ingredients.

Here they are, in all there not-so-glorious glory:

Cream, Nonfat Milk, Confetti Swirl Ribbon [Powdered Sugar (Sugar, Corn Starch), Peanut Oil, Maltodextrin, Nonpareils (Sugar, Corn Starch, Confectioner's Glaze, Yellow 5, Carnauba Wax, Red 3, Blue 1, Red 40, Yellow 6, Blue 2), White Coating (Sugar, Partially Hydrogenated Palm Kernel and Palm Oils, Reduced Mineral Whey Powder, Whole Milk Powder, Nonfat Dry Milk, Soy Lecithin as an Emulsifier, Salt), Stabilizer (Mono and Diglycerides, Hydrogenated Soybean Oil, Tocopherol, Ascorbic Acid, Citric Acid as an Antioxidant, Soy Lecithin as an Emulsifier), Salt], Sugar, Cake Pieces (Unbleached Wheat Flour, Sugar, Palm Oil, Water, Nonfat Milk Powder, Salt, Natural Flavors), Frosted Cookie Freckles [Sugar, Coconut Oil, Buttermilk Powder, Natural Flavor, Titanium Dioxide (Color), Artificial Colors (Yellow 6 Lake, Yellow 5 Lake, Blue 1 Lake), Soy Lecithin as an Emulsifier], Vanilla Cream Flavored Base [Sugar, Water, High Fructose Corn Syrup, Modified Corn Starch, Titanium Dioxide (Color), Salt, Natural and Artificial Flavor, Potassium Sorbate (Preservative)], Corn Syrup, Whey Powder, Emulsifier/Stabilizer Blend (Cellulose Gum, Mono and Diglycerides, Guar Gum, Carrageenan, Polysorbate 80), Natural Flavors.

22 of these ingredients are controversial — about 30% of the total ingredients are items we really don’t want to be eating. And two of them stand out above and beyond the others.

The use of confectioner’s glaze is especially unappealing. For those who are not clear on what confectioner’s glaze is — it’s actually shellac (commonly used to varnish wood surfaces). Shellac is actually a chemical secreted by female lac bugs (Laccifer lacca), a type of “scale insect.” They create shellac in order to form sheltering tunnels as they travel along the outside of trees. It is extracted for industrial use by scraping bark, bugs and tunnels off of trees in Asian forests and into canvas tubes. The tubes are then heated over a flame until the shellac melts and seeps out of the canvas, after which it is dried into flakes for sale. Before use in food or as varnish, the shellac must be re-dissolved in denatured alcohol.
The second one we take serious issue with is carnuba wax. That’s the same wax that’s used in car wax and shoe polish. And in Icing on the Cake, we get to eat it.

Is this really ice cream? We’re not so sure.

So, Baskin-Robbins, we’d really rather not have our cake and lick it too. It’s kind of toxic. Sorry.

https://www.baskinrobbins.com/content/baskinrobbins/en/products/icecream/flavors.html?popupurl=/content/baskinrobbins/en/products/icecream/flavors/icingonthecakeicecream.html