Kraft Mac & Cheese Yellow Dyes Targeted by Bloggers' Petition

Friday, 08 Mar 2013 03:01 PM

By Alexandra Ward

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Two North Carolina food bloggers are petitioning Kraft to eliminate yellow dyes from its popular Macaroni & Cheese dishes, calling the additives "dangerous."

Even though Lisa Leake and Vani Hari say they grew up eating Macaroni & Cheese, the two started a movement on the social action website earlier this week to have the food company Kraft follow in its European counterpart's footsteps and remove yellow dyes 5 and 6 from its cheesy pasta-boxed dinners.

"Kraft Macaroni & Cheese in the U.S. contains the artificial food dyes Yellow 5 and Yellow 6. These unnecessary — yet potentially harmful — dyes are not in Kraft Macaroni & Cheese in other countries, including the U.K., because they were removed due to consumer outcry," Leake and Hari wrote in the petition. "It's time we demand the same here in the U.S."

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The women claim the dyes, which are legal and approved by the Food and Drug Administration, are contaminated with carcinogens and linked to long-term health issues such as asthma, skin rashes, and migraines.

As of Friday afternoon, more than 161,000 people signed the petition.

Kraft responded to the petition, and said that although the dyes are legal, the company offers an expanded line of products that don't include any coloring.

"The safety and quality of our products is our highest priority and we take consumer concerns very seriously," Kraft spokesperson Lynne Galia said in a statement. "We carefully follow the laws and regulations in the countries where our products are sold. So in the U.S., we only use colors that are approved and deemed safe for food use by the Food and Drug Administration."

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In November, a Mississippi teenager used to speak out about an ingredient in Gatorade that she claimed was also a chemical found in fire retardants. PepsiCo, the maker of the sports drink, complied and removed the ingredient after the petition drew more than 200,000 signatures.

Related stories:

Kraft Cuts Price of US Maxwell House Coffee

Kraft Revenue Forecast Disappoints; Shares Lower

Heinz and Kraft: Food Stocks Growing Abroad

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