Both artificial and natural flavours contain chemicals. The distinction between natural and artificial flavorings is the source of chemicals.
Natural flavors are created from anything that can be eaten (i.e animals and vegetables), even if those edible things are processed in the lab to create flavorings.
Artificial flavors come from anything that is inedible (i.e petroleum) that is processed to create chemicals of flavorings.
- The natural or artificial emulsifiers, solvents and preservatives in flavor mixtures are called “incidental additives.” That means the manufacturer does not have to disclose their presence on food labels. Food manufacturers can use a natural solvent such as ethanol in their flavors, but the FDA also permits them to use synthetic solvents such as propylene glycol. Flavor extracts and food ingredients that have been derived from genetically engineered crops may also be labeled “natural” because the FDA has not fully defined what the term “natural” means.
- Paradoxically, the FDA requires a natural flavor to be labeled as an artificial flavor if it is added to a food not to reinforce a flavor already present but to lend a new taste. For instance, adding naturally-derived blueberry flavor to a plain muffin would require that the blueberry flavor be labeled “artificial flavor.”
- Consistent quality. Each mango in fruit basket has different properties. One is sweeter than the rest. Some are ripe and some are overripe. On the other hand artificial producer assure that their product have only slight quality differences.
- Ease of use. Gather anatto seeds, soak in small amount of hot water for couple of minutes, then add extract to dish. Prepare some more if the color is inadequate. The easier way. Drop the color powder or liquid little by little until the right color is attained. A quantified amount can be added the next cooking session.
- Cheaper. In most cases, artificials are cheaper than naturals. Adding mango flavor is cheaper than adding real mango. Cheap juice drinks are cheap cause they are made of cheap flavorings and preservatives.
- Measurable sensory output. Because artificial are produced with consistent quality, one teaspoon pineapple powder per liter water is delicious and it will still be delicious the next formula preparation. A measure of 200g ripe pineapple per liter water might be delectable or adjustment is needed. Adjustment is likely every time such is prepared.
- Lesser volume. Have you ever wonder how companies are able to fit the taste of a whole chicken in a small sachet about 2 x 3 inches? Easy, use artificial flavors.
- Availability. Fruits and vegetables are seasonal and might not be available in place where it is needed. Artificial manufacture is able to fill the gap.
- Some natural flavors can be more dangerous than the artificial ones. Traces of cyanide can be found in almond flavor, or Benzaldehyde, when derived from nature. That’s why in movies, the smell of bitter of almonds on the victim is often linked to cyanide poisoning.
Unknown, please consult with your doctor.
Source: Businessinsider, http://www.businessinsider.com/facts-about-natural-and-artificial-flavors-2014-1