Category Archives: kraft

Important ingredient changes for Kraft singles

There have been plenty of good food news announcements lately. Manufacturers appear to be responding positively to consumer voices are making the kinds of significant changes that may very well change the existing view of brands and manufacturers alike. It’s exciting to see companies actively making the kinds of adjustments to their products that can have real effects on the health and well-being of millions of consumers.

This week, we can add another product from Kraft that the company is scheduling for a healthier make-over: Kraft singles. Cheese products are among those that instantly come to mind when you ask consumers what categories in which they are likely to find unhealthy ingredients. That’s understandable, since that’s how the products are actually referred to – “cheese product,” instead of cheese. Consumers have taken the “heads up” from the term.

But now Kraft says that it is removing artificial preservatives from its most popular Singles cheese product variety. The change will affect Kraft Singles in the full-fat American and White American varieties. According to Kraft, these varieties account for the majority of sales for the brand. Sorbic acid is being replaced by natamycin, which Kraft sys is a “natural mold inhibitor.

While Kraft hasn’t acknowledged that it’s decision is due to a growing number of Americans paying closer attention to what they eat and wanting to know that their foods contain natural ingredients, it’s a good bet that this is what’s motivating the news.

The ingredients used in Kraft Singles, prior to this change have been approved for use by the Food and Drug Administration. But, even so, putting out a product that is free of artificial preservatives is a definite selling point for any manufacturer. Kraft, for example, plans to begin airing TV ads near the end of February touting that its Kraft Singles cheese product “begins with milk” and are now “made with no artificial preservatives.”

The ads show cartoon cows grazing in a pasture, with a milk truck driving past.

The new Kraft packages, which began appearing on supermarket shelves in recent weeks, also come stamped with a red circle noting they have no artificial preservatives or flavors. Kraft says its Singles haven’t used artificial flavors for many years, but that it just recently decided to advertise that aspect of the product.

“Consumers are looking for those less artificial cues and messages,” said Gavin Schmidt, manager of cheese research and development at Kraft. “Those messages are more meaningful to consumers than they have been in the past.”

Schmidt says the change took about five years to perfect because Kraft wanted to ensure the product’s taste and shelf life remained the same. He declined to provide details, but said it wasn’t as simple as swapping out an artificial preservative and replacing it with a natural one.

Schmidt said Kraft is testing the removal of artificial preservatives from its other Kraft Singles varieties, but that it wanted to start with the most popular lines first. The changes do not affect Kraft Singles that are 2 percent milk, fat-free or other full-fat varieties.

Even so, wants to acknowledge this move by Kraft Foods to keep their customers happy and provide a healthier, better product. We hope that other manufacturers take note and that this trend continues. While it isn’t likely to happen any decade soon, we’d love to reach the day that artificial ingredients aren’t showing up on ANY ingredient labels for ANY products in our grocery stores. Until that day, we’ll just keep spreading the good food news wherever we find it!

Kraft Macaroni and Cheese gets a little less “colorful”

Kids get a big kick out of food products that look like their favorite characters – and parents get the benefit of knowing before they serve their children a meal that it’s going to be eaten without protest. Unfortunately parents also know that most of the time the food products that are manufactured in the shapes of popular characters don’t often come with the most desirable ingredient lists. Artificial food colors are often included in the list of those ingredients.

The use of artificial food dyes in the American food supply is rampant and quite controversial – especially when those dyes are in children’s food products. The major food colors used in the U.S. are Red 3, Red 40, Yellow 5, Yellow 6 and Blue 1. Each of these dyes has been linked to ADHD symptoms in children. Artificial colors are already banned in various countries. If they aren’t banned, many countries require the use of a warning label on the food containing the dye alerting consumers that consumption of the product may affect a child’s behavior. Nothing like this is currently required by the FDA and there are thousands and thousands of products in the use that use these dyes. Children are consuming those products every day.

According to a Kraft company spokesperson, Kraft is taking a step forward in the food coloring controversy. Beginning in 2014, Kraft has given its line of character-shaped macaroni and cheese a recipe makeover. Part of that makeover is that the product will now be using spices instead of artificial food coloring to give the pasta its famous orange-yellow hue.

In addition to the great news about the elimination of artificial colors, Kraft’s new recipe includes six additional grams of whole grains, a lower sodium level and reduced saturated fat content. The company acknowledges that this is a result of its customers communicating with them. Because of that communication, beginning in 2014, Yellow 5 and Yellow 6 are out of Kraft Macaroni and Cheese products in fun shapes like SpongeBob SquarePants, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and How to Train Your Dragon 2.

While we’re all thrilled to hear that Kraft is making real improvements to some of its products, has to wonder why those changes aren’t being made to its classic elbow-shaped macaroni and cheese products as well. Since its new recipe that does not include artificial colors will work out fine for its character-shaped line, we’re pretty sure that same recipe can be used in those classic products without a problem.

When questioned about this, the company responded by saying that switching ingredients in products isn’t a simple task as they cannot alter the product consumers have come to expect. We don’t think that’s the best answer for a few reasons. In the first place the original SpongeBob Macaroni & Cheese didn’t taste any different than the classic Kraft Macaroni and Cheese Product. So if the new ingredients are acceptable in the character-shaped versions, they’ll be equally acceptable in the classic.

In addition, the Kraft Macaroni and Cheese that’s sold in Europe doesn’t contain artificial colors. For those products, paprika and beta-carotene impart color. Consumers are fine with it. We certainly hope that Kraft understands that we’d like to see every blue box it’s selling to consumers free from artificial colors. We’re pretty sure they’ll make their existing customers happy – and that they’ll find new customers who had previously avoided their products because of those artificial colors.

This is definitely a step in the right direction for our food supply. Can’t wait to hear more from Kraft in the future that takes it even further!

Kraft recalls Velveeta cheeses with thin wire pieces…

kraftshellscheesecups brings you the latest in food recalls. Check back daily to learn more about the foods we eat everyday!

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – Northfield, IL., September 30 2011 – Kraft Foods Global, Inc. is voluntarily recalling three varieties of Velveeta Shells & Cheese Single Serve Microwaveable Cups with limited “best when used by” dates as a precaution due to the possible presence of small, thin wire bristle pieces.

The following products are being recalled:


For exact product images click here.

Consumers can find the “best when used by” date on the bottom of the package.

No other “best when used by” dates of Velveeta Shells & Cheese Single Serve Microwaveable Cups or any other Kraft Foods products are being recalled.

There have been no reports of consumer injuries or complaints. Kraft Foods is issuing this voluntary recall out of an abundance of caution.

Approximately 137,000 cases of the affected products were shipped to customers across the United States. The affected products were not distributed in Canada.

Consumers who purchased affected “best when used by” dates of these products should not eat them. They should return them to the store of purchase for an exchange or full refund. Consumers also can contact Kraft Foods Consumer Relations Monday through Friday at 1-800-308-1841.

The affected products were manufactured in Champaign, IL and Lakeville, MN.