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I found a new product at a grocery one day in the produce section. It sounded promising, a lemonade which said no high-fructose corn syrup. Here is the marketing blurb I read on the back label:

“…Classic Lemonade is made the traditional way with pure lemon juice, water and sugar. Our delicious and refreshing lemonade is all-natural and does not contain any high fructose corn syrup or preservatives…”

Now, read the ingredient list:

“INGREDIENTS: Filtered Water, Sugar Clarified Lemon Juice Concentrate, Gum Arabic, Natural Flavors and Citric Acid.”

I was so disappointed! This is not the “Traditional Way,” do you agree? I would propose that Lemon Juice already contains natural flavors and citric acid.

Gum Arabic comes from the sap of an African tree. It makes the drink thicker and keeps the sugar from settling out.

For those of us who have food restrictions, “Natural Flavors” can be a real problem. Manufacturers don’t have to say what specific flavor it is. Some are derived from corn, yeast and other natural but trouble-causing natural ingredients.

Tricky Wording: Buyer Beware
It’s common these days to label foods “pure” or “natural.” These words do not really mean quality.

Pure olive oil is a specific classification several steps below extra virgin, and it’s not desirable when one wants more flavor. As for natural, arsenic and cyanide are natural and not healthy at all!

I’m sad that whoever wrote that marketing blurb found it acceptable. I’m sad that most people would not read the ingredient list after being told it was made “the traditional way with pure lemon juice, water and sugar.”

I remember when Mott’s Natural Applesauce added Vitamin C. It seemed rather unnatural to find Vitamin C in an apple product, to me.

This is another example of using “natural” as a random marketing word. They might better have said “unsweetened.”

  • Have you found this sort of conflict on any food package?
  • Do you regularly read labels?
  • If so, when did you start? (My Mom taught me in elementary school.)

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