General Mills, the maker of cereals like Lucky Charms (blue horseshoes, purple diamonds) Reese’s Puffs, and Trix, announced they’re removing artificial colors and flavors from all of their cereals. Though the company’s iconic Cheerios have been all natural for years, 40 percent of their cereals still contain artificial ingredients.
General Mills joins Hershey’s, Nestle, Subway and Panera in similar announcements about the removal of artificial colors, flavors and ingredients. In a blog post on the company’s website, Jim Murphy, the president of General Mills’ cereal division said, “We’re simply listening to consumers and these ingredients are not what people are looking for in their cereal today.”
Consumer surveys (including Nielsen’s Global Health and Wellness Survey) show that a growing number of Americans are moving toward more natural, simpler foods and ingredients.
So how will General Mills achieve those vivid colors naturally? They’ll use a mix of fruit, vegetable, and spice extracts including turmeric and annatto to maintain yellow and orange hues. And blueberries for purple.