(PIX11) — Starbucks brought back its wildly popular Pumpkin Spice Latte early this year, but an influential food blogger is hoping the coffee conglomerate will take back some of what’s inside the seasonal favorite.
Vani Hari, who writes at the blog Food Babe, posted a list of ingredients inside the drink made with espresso, fall spice flavors and steamed milk.
Among the ingredients is caramel color level IV, which is made with ammonia and has been derided as having potential health risks.
A Starbucks spokeswoman said the ingredient is “absolutely safe to consume” and has been defined as having no significant risk level by the FDA.
Still, the company is mulling the removal of the additive.
“We’re looking at actively phasing (caramel color) out,” Linda Mills told PIX11 News, saying there is a “team in place” to nix the ingredient but no timeline as to its removal.
There four four types of caramel coloring and some of them contain 4-methylimidazole (4-MEI), a chemical compound that is not directly added to food or drinks but is formed during the cooking process, according to the FDA.
The International Agency for Research on Cancer classifies 4-Mel as “possibly carcinogenic to humans.”
Hari’s post also calls out Starbucks for its lack of pumpkin in the gourd-inspired latte, and says they may also contain high-fructose corn syrup.
Mills said there’s no high-fructose corn syrup in the Pumpkin Space Latter, which instead is sweetened with cane syrup.
Hari is the same blogger whose campaigns pushed Subway to remove the so-called “yoga mat” chemical from its bread, and Chik-fil-A to transition to antibiotic-free chickens.
The end of Hari’s post calls on readers to contact Starbucks demanding that the coffee chain remove the additives and sign a petition asking for the company to carry organic milk.