Natural Flavors

Natural Flavors

Natural Flavors

Flavors play a pivotal role in defining the taste and overall experience of food and beverages. “Natural flavors” are often used and perceived as being healthier than synthetic flavors. In this blog we are going to look at some of the pros and cons of natural flavors and why we choose not to use natural or synthetic flavors in KOYAH’s products.

Natural flavors are defined by the FDA as an essential oil or extract from a plant or animal source. While these origins may seem appealing, they also come with certain drawbacks that consumers should be aware of:

Synthetic Additives in Natural Flavors?

One of the lesser-known facts about natural flavors is that they may contain synthetic additives. While the primary components are sourced from natural ingredients, manufacturers sometimes use synthetic substances to enhance and stabilize the flavors. As a result, the term "natural" on product labels can be misleading. Consumers may unknowingly consume artificial chemicals, which could be a concern for health-conscious individuals.

Lack of Transparency

When it comes to flavors, transparency can be an issue. Food companies often guard their proprietary flavor formulas (most famously is probably the Coca-Cola’s formula for Coca-Cola syrup), which means consumers may not know the ingredients used in the flavors. This may be a great strategy for businesses to protect their “secret formulas”, but from the customer standpoint it makes it impossible to know what you are actually eating or drinking.

Allergenic Reactions

Natural flavors, despite their name, can trigger allergic reactions in some individuals. People with allergies to specific foods might react adversely to certain natural flavors derived from those allergens. Manufacturers are required to label allergens on their products, but cross-contamination during processing may still pose risks to sensitive consumers.

Impact on Flavor Preference

Natural flavors are potent and intense, designed to enhance taste sensations. Over time, this can influence individuals' flavor preferences and may lead to a decreased appreciation for more subtle, natural tastes. In some cases, people may develop a reliance on heavily flavored foods, potentially affecting their overall dietary choices.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q: Are natural flavors always healthier than artificial flavors?

 A: Not necessarily. While natural flavors are derived from real food sources, they may still contain synthetic additives and allergens, making them potentially less healthy for some individuals.

Q: Can natural flavors cause food allergies?

A: Yes, they can. People with allergies to specific foods may experience allergic reactions to natural flavors derived from those allergens.

Q: Should I be concerned about the lack of transparency in natural flavors?

A: It depends on your dietary preferences and concerns. If you have specific dietary restrictions or ethical considerations, the lack of transparency in natural flavors may be a cause for concern.

Q: Are natural flavors more environmentally friendly than artificial flavors?

A: While natural flavors come from plant and animal sources, their production can have environmental implications, such as deforestation and increased water usage.

Q: Are there regulations governing the use of natural flavors in food products?

A: Yes, there are regulations in place to govern the use of natural flavors. However, the term "natural" can be open to interpretation, leading to varying practices among manufacturers.

At KOYAH, integrity matters in everything we do, especially when making food. We believe how ingredients are processed matters and that is why our products have zero flavors or additives of any kind. With our current single ingredient powders, flavors are not needed, but as we eventually expand our product line into products that require flavoring, we plan to only use actual foods to flavor and sweeten our products instead of natural or synthetic flavors.


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