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Caribou Coffee Outlines Clean Label Beverage Standard for US Stores

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Caribou Coffee plans to have its Clean Label commitment reflected in all its 455 U.S. stores by 2018. “Caribou Coffee – Nicollet Mall” by m01229 is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

Caribou Coffee has launched a marketing campaign based upon its new in-house Clean Label standard, while committing to having all beverage menu products sold at all its U.S. stores meeting the standard by 2018.

Though there is no independent standard behind the clean label movement — a consumer-driven movement that supports ingredients on labels that are widely known and understood as ingestible foodstuffs, as opposed to, say, ethoxyqion, disodium guanylate or carbomethyl cellulose — the company has created a list of more than 70 “off-limits” ingredients in an effort to eliminate all artificial colors, artificial flavors, artificial sweeteners and artificial preservatives.

According to Caribou, 91 percent of its beverage menu items currently meet the clean label standard, and the company said it is working with its suppliers to get that number to 100 percent by the end of the year. The products currently not meeting the standard are those made with chai, sugar-free chocolate syrup, and certain toppings.

The company has been implementing a clean label plan since 2014, and said the effort will not change its sourcing operations, with all its coffees continuing to bear Rainforest Alliance certification. Caribou’s clean label standard currently applies only to its beverages, although in a FAQ, the company said, “We are currently exploring how to best clean up our menu beyond beverages.”

The clean label effort will affect all 455 Caribou locations currently in the U.S., including the approximately 50 that are combined Coffee & Bagels stores with Einstein Bagels.

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1 Comment

Cactus Jake

I think it’s great they are proactively trying to make their products better. It sure beats waiting for Big Brother to come tap you on the shoulder and tell you that big parts of your menu now have ‘banned substances’ that have to be replaced with other ingredients in 3 months. Kudos to Caribou.

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