Kraft Macaroni 'n' Cheese has been a dinner staple for moms for as long as we can remember. Kids absolutely adore it. Heck, parents adore it. It's a classic, iconic comfort food. I've literally had friends say that if their mac doesn't have that orange yellow-y signature color of Kraft's cheese, then it's just not the same. Still, it's that food coloring that's causing quite an uproar among some concerned consumers.
Two North Carolina food bloggers -- Lisa Leake and Vani Hari -- felt similarly warm and fuzzy about the product until they learned that the U.S. version contains the additives Yellow 5 and Yellow 6. In turn, they created an online petition in hopes of garnering support to demand a change. Amazingly, so far, more than 155K people have signed the Change.org petition, requesting that Kraft to made the U.S. version of the mac additive-free, too.
Leake and Hari say the artificial food dyes serve no purpose in the favorite comfort food, and they're concerned they could be harmful -- especially to kids.
While the FDA's current position is that Yellow 5 and Yellow 6 are safe, and in 2011, they rejected the need for foods that use them to sport warning labels, it bears noting that the dyes are made in a lab with chemicals derived from petroleum. In countries outside the U.S., the dyes require a warning label and have been banned elsewhere.
And yet, the controversy here in the U.S. isn't exactly new ... The consumer advocacy group Center for Science in the Public Interest has for years been lobbying the FDA to ban the use of food dyes, citing a "rainbow of risks" that it says includes hyperactivity in children, allergic reactions, and a possible link to cancer.
So it's no wonder Leake and Hari and now more than 155K supporters of their petition are concerned. I hope Kraft and other food giants answer their call. Because there's absolutely no reason they can't switch to using natural methods to make our food look just as yummy!
Watch Lisa and Vani compare the U.K. additive-free version to the U.S. version ... (They even look the same!)
How do you feel about artificial food dyes -- particularly in Kraft Mac 'n' Cheese?
Image via TheFoodBabe/YouTube