Kraft will remove dye from mac and cheese; are colorless M&Ms next?

Kraft announced it will remove artificial dye from some of its macaroni and cheese products.
Kraft announced it will remove artificial dye from some of its macaroni and cheese products.
(Morry Gash / Associated Press)

Kraft macaroni and cheese is known for its neon yellow color, but the company has announced plans to remove the yellow dye that gives the mac and cheese its signature hue. But before health-conscious moms across the globe give a cheer, the company is removing the dye only from certain varieties.

The packaged-food giant plans to replace its artificial dye with spices such as paprika in its SpongeBob Squarepants, Halloween and winter-shaped mac and cheese boxes beginning next year. The new recipe will contain less sodium and saturated fat and include more whole grains. The regular-shaped “original flavor” pasta boxes will remain the same.

The move comes after a petition posted in March asked the company to remove artificial dyes from its macaroni and cheese. The petition had more than 348,000 signatures, but Kraft is denying the petition was the motivation for the change in its cheesy formula.

“We’ll continue to make improvement where we can,” Triona Schmelter, Kraft Food Group Inc.'s vice president of marketing meals told the Associated Press.


Regardless of the real motivation behind Kraft’s new formulas, the two food bloggers who started the petition have already stepped forward to take credit.

“Kraft Foods is taking a commendable first step in listening to consumers’ call to end the use of artificial dyes in foods that families consume every day,” said Vani Hari in a statement. “Kraft is obviously listening to me and the 348,000 people who have signed my petition on”

Renee Shutters, a mother in New York, is hoping Mars will follow in Kraft’s suit and respond to a petition she’s posted on asking the company to remove artificial dyes from M&M’s candy.

Would you buy paprika-laden macaroni and cheese and colorless M&Ms? Let us know in the comments below.

Need cheese like you need air? I get it. Follow me on Twitter: @Jenn_Harris_


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