Synthetic dyes are pervasive in all kinds of food. Crazy hued yogurts? Frosting on a cake? While there isn’t much evidence to prove these dyes are harmful, more and more consumers are on the lookout for natural food coloring.
Of course as we learned last year, natural alone doesn’t mean acceptable, when Starbucks was outed for using a red dye made from the cochineal bug in their strawberry frappuchinos (they stopped after word spread).
While it’s currently cost prohibitive, food scientists like Steve Talcott are looking into extracting color from purple sweet potatoes. At the moment, the dye would cost $136/pound, but if there is enough demand the price with decrease.
How much better would you feel knowing your crazy looking yogurt is colored by the humble sweet potato?
This reminds me of some of my first food memories. For Halloween, my mother and I made deviled eggs using orange food dye to color the filling. I was so interested in being able to change the color of food. Now as I am older, I see many different ways to color food and enhance flavor without the use of artificial chemicals.
Thanks for sharing that story. Glad you liked the article. Natural dyes could be an interesting development in food science. Cheers.