Recently we came across a food labeling article at USA Today regarding several popular foods that are labeled “natural,” but contain ingredients that don’t seem to be natural at all. While we won’t name brands, we want to stress the point that many consumers today are purchasing “natural” products, without really knowing what it means. Here are some examples of foods that proclaim to be natural – but are they really?
Sweet potato fries. According to Consumer Reports, xanthan gum contained in this food is often used as a thickening agent. Brand owners claim those ingredients contained in products designated as “natural” have been reviewed to ensure they may be promoted as natural according to FDA regulations and applicable laws.
Fruit cups. Are those pears, peaches, and cherries you’re enjoying in your fruit cup really natural? Many consumers wonder about potassium sorbate, an artificial preservative.
Chicken breast strips. One company produces frozen southwestern style strips that are grilled and ready, proclaiming “all natural except for corn syrup solids” on the package. The strips also contain citric acid. However, the company maintains the labeling on the product is proper due to the fact that the chicken breast strips meet the definition of ‘natural’, according to federal government standards.
Vegetable oil. Is “pure and 100% natural” really true? Manufactured from soybeans that are genetically engineered, it’s hard to know.
Natural cheese. Would you consider shredded sharp cheddar cheese that contains a substance often manufactured of wood particles and referred to as ‘cellulose powder’, natural? This ingredient prevents cheese from sticking together, and according to Consumer Reports “natural” is a term used to set the shredded cheese apart from pasteurized process cheese.
Consumers today want products that are natural and contain fewer preservatives and other ingredients that are often difficult for many shoppers to pronounce, let alone understand what those ingredients really are.
At REA JET, we know that the demands of consumers are changing as many move toward healthier choices for their families. If you’re in the food or beverage manufacturing industry, we provide exceptional coding and marking systems designed to keep your production lines flowing while providing clear, indelible printing even in the most difficult environments. Rely on us for all of your industrial printing equipment needs!