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Campaign to Remove Food Dye from Kraft Mac & Cheese

Posted at: 03/10/2013 6:46 PM
Updated at: 03/11/2013 10:50 AM
By: JENNA LOHSE

(ABC 6 NEWS)-- Kraft’s Macaroni & Cheese has been an American favorite for decades, but some people are saying the blue box contains dangerous ingredients.

Some parents call it a staple food item that their kids won't go without.

"I grew up on Kraft Macaroni & Cheese and I make it all the time for my kids too," said Kris Reynolds of Byron.

Reynolds says you're most likely to find the blue box in her kitchen cabinet.

"It's just easy, cheesy," said Reynolds.

But it's the cheesy part that is a concern for others. Almost 200,000 Americans have signed a change.org petition, asking Kraft to drop two artificial dyes that give the dish it's cheesy look.

The petition says Yellow 5 and 6 are the worrisome ingredients that are left out of the Mac & Cheese Kraft sells in Europe.

The petition points to studies linking the dyes to long term health problems like asthma, skin rashes and migraines.

But Kraft is fighting back releasing a statement saying, "We only use colors that are approved and deemed safe for food use by the food and drug administration."

"The studies that have looked at this are not very strong. There's nothing that I see that raises a real concern about these dyes," said Dr. Robert Besser, Chief Health and Medical Editor.  

And while the number supporters for the petition is growing, not everyone is ready to give up the blue box blues.

"I think everybody is trying to eat more natural, we are too, but I think we'll still buy mac and cheese," said Gina Manahan of Rochester.

"I grew up on it, many kids have grown up on it and they seem to be doing just fine. Seems like these days they're always finding something in some kind of food not to give our kids," said Reynolds.

Kraft says it makes 14 Mac & Cheese products without the dyes. The creators of the petition are looking to change more than just Mac & Cheese. If they convince Kraft to remove the dyes, they hope it will inspire other food companies to do the same.