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Starbucks, Panera pull artificial ingredients from fall beverages

In response to growing demand for clean ingredients, Starbucks and Panera Bread Co. this week announced tweaks to their seasonal pumpkin spice latte offerings, which include the removal of artificial additives and the addition of actual pumpkin.

“After hearing from customers and partners about ingredients, we took another look at this beverage and why we created it so many years ago,” Starbucks executive Peter Dukes wrote in a blog post. “It was simple—espresso, perfectly steamed milk, warm fall spices with delicious flavor of pumpkin pie that reminds you of the cool, crisp days of autumn.”

Panera’s move toward a cleaner latte comes as the company makes strides in removing artificial colors, preservatives and sweeteners from its menu, an effort it pledged to complete by next year. It’s also rolling out a new line of “clean” bottled beverages this fall that are free of artificial ingredients.

“Our goal is to continue adding new flavors and lifestyle choices in beverage—clean, but evolving with the tastes and seasons,” said Dan Kish, Panera’s head chef.

Testing is also underway to introduce clean versions of the vanilla, chocolate and caramel syrups used in coffee beverages made in-restaurant, the bakery-cafe company said. 

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