Boycott Watch  
March 28, 2012
Boycott Watch to Starbucks: Suspend all Sales of Beverages Containing Bugs / Bug Juice
Summary: More about how the US FDA approves companies feeding you bugs.
   Boycott Watch has exposed how the US Food and Drug Administration allows companies to put ground up cochineal beetles in food since 2006, and allowing companies to call it either "carmine" or "cochineal extract" without telling the public the food coloring is really ground up insects. Boycott Watch sees this as the US government covering up problems in the food supply, allowing big businesses to secretly color food without the public knowing they are being fed creepy crawly bugs because they know consumers would not eat the food if they really knew what was in it, just so long as the food manufacturers can create better-looking items

   Boycott Watch considers it to be a cover-up because the FDA guidelines page for cochineal extract or carmine does not even mention that it is in fact ground up insects, thus distracting the public from the facts.

   Cochineal extract / carmine have been FDA approved for many years. It came to market because when ground-up, you get the very brightest red possible, which is why it is also used in lipstick, candy and reportedly sometimes in beef. Boycott Watch therefore also advises people check the ingredients in those products as well.

   While some people have been challenging the US FDA for allowing bugs in human diets, Starbucks came under fire for using the bugs in their strawberry beverages. As we reported, Starbucks recently came under fire because they always claimed corporate responsibility, and as a result has lost a great amount of good faith from customers. Boycott Watch is calling upon Starbucks to immediately suspend the sales of all beverages using actual bug juice.

   Boycott Watch has not yet seen an organized boycott against Starbucks for using the bugs in their drinks, and does not expect to see an organized effort because it's not needed. "People are sickened hearing what is actually in their drinks. Starbucks customers who spend several dollars each day for a premium beverages do not want cockroaches or any other insects in their drinks and will inherently stop buying those products" said Fred Taub, President of Boycott Watch. "The US FDA has been silent to consumer complains about carmine / cochineal extract for years."

   Fred Taub also pointed out that there is only one way to makes sure you avoid eating bugs. "The fact is, kosher certifications have always been far stricter than the FDA. Not only are all products containing insects forbidden from garnering kosher certification, but you will see US FDA approved non-dairy products labeled as kosher-dairy because they contain dairy extracts. Additionally, Kosher for Passover products, except for Matzah products, are a staple in gluten-free diets because it is a higher standard for food purity that the FDA. If you want to avoid eating bugs, forget the FDA and only eat kosher."

   In an official statement, Starbucks had little to say other than acknowledging the ground-up bugs are used in some of their drinks and that it is FDA approved. While the FDA specifies cochineal extract / carmine must be listed in ingredients, the innocuous name essentially allows the food industry to hide the truth behind what it really is. Unless you are a food ingredient detective, you would never know.

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