What are Artificial Flavors?
The FDA defines an artificial flavor as, “any substance, the function of which is to impart flavor, which is not derived from a spice, fruit or fruit juice, vegetable or vegetable juice, edible yeast, herb, bark, bud, root, leaf or similar plant material, meat, fish, poultry, eggs, dairy products, or fermentation products thereof.”  An artificial flavoring is derived from a substance that is inedible, but is then processed to create chemicals which eventually become artificial flavors. While artificial flavors are still tested in lab settings, food and beverage companies often turn to artificial flavors when they are looking for a cheaper alternative to the all-natural route.  For example, vanilla bean is a crop which is an expensive and labor intensive plant to extract, thus companies aimed to find an alternative way of producing the flavor of vanilla. Vanillin is the organic compound responsible for the flavor and smell of vanilla. After researching much of the genetic makeup of vanilla bean, scientists found a way to artificially recreate a synthetic version of vanillin to use as a substitute for vanilla bean. The extraction methods and where these chemicals often come from can be alarming. For example, in 2006, a Japanese scientist by the name of Mayu Yamamoto found a way to extract vanillin from cow feces. This example is just one in a long line of others which is why we decided to avoid the usage of artificial flavors in our drinks to give our customers a transparent view of what they are putting into their bodies.