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So you don't like beetle juice, huh?

Cochineal beetles have long been used to color food and beverages a sunny shade of reddish-pink. But just ‘cause it’s natural doesn’t mean consumers were quick to lap it up.


This past January, Starbucks launched an aggressive effort to move from artificial ingredients to all-natural. Beetles were part of the swap. Once a vegan barista discovered the switch-up, the Detroit Free Press reports, he alerted a vegan blogger and the news took over the ‘Net.


Starbucks has since announced that they are eliminating beetles not just from their strawberry-flavored drinks, like the tasty Strawberry Frappuccino, but they’re also removing it from the Raspberry Swirl Cake, Red Velvet Whoopie Pie and various other pink- and red-colored treats. It’s replacement? Lycopene.


Lycopene is a tomato-based extract that is, like the cochineal beetle, completely natural. Its origin, however, seems to be going a long way to soothe outraged coffee consumers. Vegans across the globe are rejoicing.


What do you think of this change, hunnies? Did you care about the beetles being used for coloring?

BY BRITTANY TAYLOR ON 4/20/2012 12:53:00 PM


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