Australian food manufacturers are falling behind on the conversion to natural colours

One of Asia Pacific’s leading authorities on natural food colours, business development director for Chr. Hansen, Ji Hoong Too, is urging Australian food manufacturers to convert to natural colours.

Too says that growth in the conversion to natural colours is being demonstrated in developing BRIC markets, (Brazil, Russia, India and China) while Australia is continuing to fall behind due to lax legislation.

She also states that an update to food labelling legislation in the EU will require warning labels on products that contain artificial colours and that change in Australia is only likely to occur if the government feels pressure from consumers and supermarkets.

Too says that it is somewhat concerning that major brands have chosen to continue using artificial colours in Australia simply because the legislation does not require them to change to natural colours.

“The implementation of warning labels on foods containing certain artificial colours in the EU and the UK, has resulted in many manufacturers converting to natural colours. In Australia and New Zealand, no warning labels are required, and as such, the conversation away from artificial colours has progressed at a slower rate,” said Too.

According to Too, retail giant ALDI was the first supermarket chain in Australia to phase out artificial colours from its entire range and that Coles has now taken a greater stance on the issue, however pressure is now building on Woolworths to follow suit. 

Natural colours are derived primarily from plants, seeds, roots and vegetables, while artificial colours are constructed primarily from chemicals.


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