"Starbucks Corp. (SBUX), the world’s largest coffee-shop chain, plans to stop using an extract made of dried insects [it's completely safe] to color some Frappuccinos and pastries after an online campaign asked for the ingredient to be removed.And a blog post yesterday (on a Starbucks website) by Cliff Burrows, President, Starbucks U.S.:
"The retailer said today its U.S. stores will phase out by June use of a red dye derived from cochineal insects, a tropical bug found in Mexico and South America. The colorant will be replaced with lycopene, a tomato extract, the Seattle-based company said in a statement on its website.
"More than 6,500 people signed a Change.org petition asking Starbucks to stop using the insects because it isn’t vegan, kosher, and consumers “don’t want crushed bugs in their designer drinks.” The extract had been used in the company’s Strawberries & Creme Frappuccino, Strawberry Banana Smoothie, raspberry swirl cake, birthday cake pop, mini donut with pink icing and red velvet whoopee pie, according to the statement."
"As I first shared on March 29, we’ve learned that we fell short of your expectations by using natural cochineal extract as a colorant in four food and two beverage offerings in the United States. Our commitment to you, our customers, is to serve the highest quality products available. As our customers you expect and deserve better – and we promise to do better.If you don't like something, sign an online petition, send an email and make a phone call. It works!
"After a thorough, yet fastidious, evaluation, I am pleased to report that we are reformulating the affected products to assure the highest quality possible. Our expectation is to be fully transitioned to lycopene, a natural, tomato-based extract, in the strawberry sauce (base) used in our Strawberries & Crème Frappuccino® blended beverage and Strawberry Banana Smoothie. Likewise, we are transitioning away from the use of cochineal extract in our food offerings which currently contain it (Raspberry Swirl Cake, Birthday Cake Pop, Mini Donut with pink icing, and Red Velvet Whoopie Pie).
"This transition will occur over time as we finalize revisions and manage production. Our intention is to be fully transitioned from existing product inventories to revised food and beverage offerings near the end of June across the U.S.
"We thank you for your continued feedback, support and comments, and we encourage you to continue to share your thoughts here as well."