In a move that demonstrates a major shift in the nation’s food supply, Nestlé Dreyer's Ice Cream, the largest ice cream maker in the world, announced yesterday that it would be removing artificial colors and flavors, high fructose corn syrup, and genetically modified ingredients from its line of more than 100 ice cream products. It’s also switching to rBST-free milk.
Brands affected by this change include Nestlé Dreyer's bestsellers Edy's®1, Häagen-Dazs®, Outshine®, Skinny Cow®, Nestlé® Ice Cream, and Nestlé® Drumstick®. The newly reformulated products have already begun appearing in stores across the country.
"Nestlé Dreyer's Ice Cream understands that consumers want to know what's in their food, where those ingredients come from and how the food products they purchase are made," Robert Kilmer, president, Nestlé Dreyer's Ice Cream, said in a statement. "We are the industry leader when it comes to innovation and, as consumer demand centers on transparency and choice, we are responding with new ways to make ice cream even better. Using simpler ingredients that our consumers can recognize, and removing those that don't belong, is a natural next step for our brands."
The move reflects growing demand--particularly among millennial shoppers-- for accessible, affordable, and healthier food.
“It looks like Nestlé may be ahead of the game,” said Duncan Fox, an analyst at Bloomberg Intelligence. “The millennial consumer wants fresh, natural products. Everyone wants less sugar, fat and salt, but it isn’t easy to achieve the same taste. Nestlé, as the world’s biggest food company, will have the best relationship with the food-ingredient companies and a good research budget.”
Nestlé’s announcement comes after a string of multinational food corporations announced plans to begin labeling the presence of GMOs in their products ahead of the Vermont GMO labeling bill that goes into effect this summer.
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Ice cream image via Shutterstock