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 Post subject: can carmine/cochineal ever be synthetic?
PostPosted: Mon Jan 30, 2012 5:13 pm 
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Baking In The Flavor
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Location: New Hampshire
i'm doing some research for my new vegan beauty blog, and my google-fu is failing me on this one. does anyone know if carmine/cochineal can ever be synthetic, or is is always derived from the cochineal beetle?

this is more of a vegan rant, but why would people continue to use ground-up bugs as coloring? according to wikipedia, it takes 70,000 beetles to create 1lb of dye, and synthetic dyes are cheaper than cochineal (cochineal $50-80 per kilogram vs synthetic dye $10-20 per kilogram). you'd think that companies would want to save money by using synthetics.

also, carmine is aka crimson lake? what?

it just seems like there's carmine in everything and it makes me grouchy.

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 Post subject: Re: can carmine/cochineal ever be synthetic?
PostPosted: Mon Jan 30, 2012 6:33 pm 
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they use it, because the alternatives are made from coal tar. it's the "natural" alternative. (also, i don't know if coal tar can produce exactly the same color as carmine.)

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 Post subject: Re: can carmine/cochineal ever be synthetic?
PostPosted: Tue Jan 31, 2012 12:37 am 
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Sick of Cupcakes
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I have never seen a synthetic form of carmine, like a synth bees wax.

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 Post subject: Re: can carmine/cochineal ever be synthetic?
PostPosted: Tue Jan 31, 2012 9:19 am 
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I've seen synth bees wax. it's in manic panic.

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 Post subject: Re: can carmine/cochineal ever be synthetic?
PostPosted: Tue Jan 31, 2012 10:45 am 
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Sick of Cupcakes
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Location: Modesto, CA
Ya - me too. I could have worded it better as in I have seen synth bees wax but not synth carmine.

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 Post subject: Re: can carmine/cochineal ever be synthetic?
PostPosted: Fri Sep 28, 2012 12:37 am 
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Wears Pleather Undies
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Joined: Mon Oct 25, 2010 8:00 pm
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Hi!

This is an example of FDA weirdness. Synthetic color additives - in both food and cosmetics - are subject to much more stringent requirements than, say, synthetic flavors. For colors, the only synthetic materials that can be used are the "official" numbered FD&C dyes (yellow number 5, etc).

Synthetic carminic acid would probably be a great thing from a "I wish I could buy more vegan cosmetics" standpoint, and would be identical to the "natural" product in safety, etc. BUT, it is not likely to happen because the huge cost of obtaining FDA approval would not make sense economically to pigment manufacturers.

So, while I'm sure that carminic acid would be pretty easy to synthesize, it would not be legal to use it in food, drugs, and cosmetics.

(Sadface)


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