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Starbucks Decides To Stop Using ‘Crushed Bug’ Dye In Its Drinks

Sunday April 22, 2012 1:23 AM - 7 Comments

starbucksChange is coming to Starbucks.

The company has decided to stop using a red dye in its drinks that is derived from crushed bugs.

The Seattle-based coffee chain said in a blog post on its website Thursday that it made the decision to reformulate its drinks after feedback from consumers prompted a “thorough” evaluation.

The company says it will swap out cochineal extract, which is made from the juice of a tiny beetle, and instead use lycopene, a tomato-based extract.

Cochineal dye is widely used in foods and cosmetics products such as lipstick, yogurt and shampoo. Starbucks had used the coloring in its strawberry flavored mixed drinks and foods like the raspberry swirl cake and red velvet whoopie pie.

The company said the items will be reformulated by the end of June.

An online petition on Change.org asking the chain to stop using the bug-based dye had collected more than 6,000 signatures.

CBS News reported the use of cochineal extract in Starbucks drinks came to light via the website thisdishisvegetarian.com. A barista, who works at a Starbucks location, wrote the the website saying the strawberry drinks are not vegan.

The petition cited reports that indicated “it takes 80,000 cochineal to produce 1 pound of the red dye.” Furthermore, the petition said the die is known to cause “severe allergic reactions” in some people.

{CBS News/Matzav.com Newscenter}

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7 Responses to “Starbucks Decides To Stop Using ‘Crushed Bug’ Dye In Its Drinks”

1. Comment from Rabbaim
Time April 22, 2012 at 2:12 AM

How many yidden drank this because of their emunah starbucks could not be a kashrus problem??
Taava blinds!

2. Comment from Kvod Shomayim
Time April 22, 2012 at 9:56 AM

Every decent human being should boycott Starbucks products! Starbucks has declared war on Traditional Marriage, R”L! They are making a tremendous Chillul Hashem & must be stopped!

3. Comment from heh
Time April 22, 2012 at 10:08 AM

Nu, according to what posek are you not allowed to eat a product which was made by a goy, and has a small amount of bug dye?

Just how would it be assur b’dieved?

4. Comment from Rabbaim
Time April 22, 2012 at 5:16 PM

If it gives color which it seems to do it is not batul in 60 and the entire drink is not Kosher!
It is not because it is made by a non Jew…. even if a frum Yid manufactured it and it is nosain mareh. It is just like a tiny tiny amount where the taste is still recognizable, the tiny amount is not batul.

5. Comment from Anon
Time April 22, 2012 at 6:42 PM

We don’t eat the pastries and strawberry drinks were never kosher anyways!!

6. Comment from emes
Time April 23, 2012 at 12:53 AM

I would boycott Starbuck’s because they engage in oshek of their employees. The IWW is attempting to organize them, and as a supporter of worker’s rights, I express my solidarity with Starbuck’s employees.

7. Comment from dave
Time April 23, 2012 at 8:57 AM

Who ever thought anything except plain coffee was kosher anyways?

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