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Nestlé chocolate will be artificial flavor free mid-2015

Nestlé USA announced Tuesday that it’s removing all artificial flavors and FDA-certified colors, including red and yellow, from their chocolate candies. It will mark the first time for a major U.S. candy manufacturer to do so.

Artificial-less products will begin appearing on the shelves by the middle of this year, with a commitment from Nestlé to have more than 250 products and 10 brands including Nestlé Butterfinger, Crunch bars, and Baby Ruths, artificially free by the end of 2015, Business Wire reports. The healthier treats will look the same as before, except for branding an identifying “No Artificial Flavors of Colors” claim on the packaging.

“Nestlé is the world’s leading nutrition, health and wellness company and our commitment to remove artificial flavors and certified colors in our chocolate candy brands is an important milestone,” Dooren Ida, Nestlé USA Confections & Snacks President said to Business Wire. Ida attributed this revamp to candy consumers’ broader interest in food trends and health initiatives that consist of fewer artificial components.

Nestlé decided to change their recipes after conducting research that indicated U.S. consumers prefer “candy brands they know and love to be free from artificial colors or flavors.” Further evidence came from Nielsen’s 2014 Global Health & Wellness Survey” which revealed over 60 percent of Americans find food with no artificial colors or flavors to be important in their food purchasing.

To make sure their products still taste the same, Nestlé is replacing artificial flavors with natural ingredients like annatto in Butterfingers and natural vanilla in Crunch bars.

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