The healthier-seeming American fast-food chain, Panera Bread recently announced it will remove more than 150 artificial additives from its menu.
This will include colors, flavors, preservatives and sweeteners to be banned from its U.S. restaurants as of today. Aspartame, azodicarbonamide (aka, the much-maligned yoga mat chemical), high-fructose corn syrup and lard are just a few examples.
The change was influenced by the “clean ingredients” initiative, which was launched last year. While the initiative will help rid the menu of artificial additives, Panera Bread will also focus on reducing antibiotics use in its meats served as well as improving the treatment of animals.
According to Quartz.com:
"Panera says it consulted organizations such as the Environmental Working Group, Natural Resources Defense Council, Union of Concerned Scientists and Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future on ingredient removals."
Yet, Panera Bread's CEO, Ron Shaich, said the decision "rested on one question:" “‘What do we want to serve our own kids?'”
While the food will be healthier in nature, Shaich said that the removal of such additives and preservatives will not jeopardize the foods' taste, but rather make it healthier with a cleaner taste.