Dunkin' Brands to remove artificial colors

Another major retailer is pledging to join the clean label movement.

Dunkin’ Brands Group, Inc. said it will remove artificial colors from products served at its Dunkin’ Donuts and Baskin-Robbins restaurants in the United States by 2018. The company is working with suppliers to replace the ingredients with colorings from sources perceived as natural.

Within the next two years, Dunkin’ Donuts will remove synthetic colors from such products as donut icings, fillings and toppings, frozen beverages, baked foods, breakfast sandwiches and coffee flavorings. Baskin-Robbins will remove synthetic colors from ice cream, syrups, sauces, sprinkles and beverages.

Exceptions include select supplier-branded ingredients produced by other companies and used as toppings or inclusions. Additionally, Baskin-Robbins will require more time to find replacements for the decorative elements on its ice cream cakes.

“This is a significant undertaking on the part of our product development teams and suppliers,” said Nigel Travis, chairman and chief executive officer of Dunkin’ Brands Group. “However, we are committed to meet the evolving needs of our customers, including their preference for more nutritional transparency and simpler ingredients, while maintaining the great taste and the fun, vibrant colors expected from Dunkin’ Donuts and Baskin-Robbins products.”    

The announcement follows a comprehensive menu review Dunkin’ Brands conducted in 2014 that led to the reformulation of a number of products to enhance quality by simplifying ingredient labels and lowering sodium and sugar content.