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The Gross Truth about Natural Colors

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The water-soluble form of carmine is also used insome alcoholic drinks, such as Campari. The insoluble form is used in a wide variety of products, including somemeat,sausages, processedpoultryproducts,marinades, bakery products and toppings,cookies,desserts, icings, pie fillings,jams, preserves, gelatin desserts, juicebeverages, some cheese and otherdairyproducts,sauces, and sweets.

The pharmaceutical industry uses cochineal to colorpillsandointments, and it is used in the cosmetics industry for hair- and skin-care products,lipsticks, face powders,rouges, and blushes.

According to one distributor of carmine, the product can be used in the following ways:

  • Food Industry – Frozen fish, meat, etc.
  • Beverage Industry – Soft drinks, fruit drinks, energy drinks, etc.
  • Alcoholic Beverages – Products with low pH requiring red or orange tones
  • Dairy Industry – Yogurts, ice cream and dairy based beverages
  • Confections – Candy, fillings, syrups, chewing gum, etc.
  • Fruit Preparations – Canned fruits such as cherries, Jams, Pulp, etc.
  • Cosmetic Industry – Dispersions close to eye area, eye shadows, lipsticks, etc.
  • Others – Ketchup, powdered drinks, dehydrated soups, canned soups, etc.

Carmine is also used in the manufacture of artificial flowers, paints and crimsonink. A bright red dye and thestaincarmine used in microbiology is often made from the carmine extract.

Image: Geoff Peters (Flickr)

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Read more: Animal Rights, Conscious Consumer, Diet & Nutrition, Food, Health, Pets, Vegan

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Angel Flinn

Angel Flinn is Director of Outreach for Gentle World a non-profit educational organization whose core purpose is to help build a more peaceful society, by educating the public about the reasons for being vegan, the benefits of vegan living, and how to go about making the transition.

284 comments

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2:43PM PST on Feb 2, 2011

Cheers!

5:47AM PST on Jan 24, 2011

Vanessa, do you think insects are not animals? They too are part of the animal kingdom.

4:40PM PST on Jan 23, 2011

Interesting

10:23AM PST on Jan 22, 2011

I wouldn't care except it's unclean for me. We can only eat grasshoppers and crickets in the insect family.

1:16PM PST on Jan 14, 2011

Ewww. But I'm glad it's not an animal product.

3:45PM PST on Dec 26, 2010

Didn't know this, so good to know

12:32AM PST on Dec 26, 2010

all i can see theses days is that white stuff(snow)

2:58AM PST on Dec 25, 2010

Thanks

2:58AM PST on Dec 25, 2010

Thanks

2:58AM PST on Dec 25, 2010

Thanks

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