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Ben & Jerry's 'natural' ice cream filled with unnatural ingredients

Thursday, August 19, 2010 by: Ethan A. Huff, staff writer
Tags: natural, ice cream, health news

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(NaturalNews) Consumer watchdog group Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) is calling out popular ice cream maker Ben & Jerry's for using artificial and chemically-altered ingredients in its "All Natural" premium ice creams. According to CSPI at least 90 percent of the flavors used in "All Natural" Ben & Jerry's ice cream are not actually natural.

Some of these ingredients include corn syrup, alkalized cocoa, partially hydrogenated soybean oil, vanillin, maltodextrin and dextrose, all of which involve some type of chemical processing or are simply artificial. Alkalized cocoa, for instance, involves a chemical process that changes cocoa's natural flavor, texture and chemical structure, as well as eliminates some of its acidity and healthy antioxidant content. And vanillin is just an artificial version of vanilla.

"Ben & Jerry's sylvan labels notwithstanding, these ingredients come from the factory, not the farm. And slapping an 'all natural' label on the products certainly implies that the products are top quality and deserve to fetch a higher price," said Michael F. Jacobson, executive director of CSPI. "It's a stretch to call any of [these ingredients] 'natural'."

CSPI has been after Ben & Jerry's, which is now part of the consumer product conglomerate Unilever, since 2002 over deceptive labeling. After bringing these problems to the attention of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) at that time, CSPI has watched the quality of Ben & Jerry's products get even worse

So now the group is now urging Ben & Jerry's to clean up its act and fix its deceptive labeling or else face legal charges to be brought before both the FDA and state attorneys general.

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