April 28, 2018 - GruntVeganfeature
It is a bright red dye commonly used to color food, cosmetics and textiles. The insects used to make carmine, are called cochineal, which are native to Latin America where they live on cacti.
It is a product that compassionate consumers will want to avoid, since it "reportedly takes up to 70,000 individual insects to produce just 500g of dye", the BBC reported.
Peta would ideally like the use of carmine to be phased out all together.
Fortunately, the number of people following a vegan lifestyle is growing rapidly, encouraging more and more companies to develop animal-friendly products, making it easier to find vegan items containing no animal products, or involving no animal cruelty such as testing.
One company that has responded is Starbucks, after customers complained about their use of carmine in iced coffees, smoothies and cakes back in 2012. They announced they would switch from carmine to lycopene, a natural, tomato-based extract.