Natural cheese is generally white unless it contains added colour. Cheese companies may add carotenoid colouring, along with lactic acid cultures, and chymosin, during the initial phase of manufacturing.

Many categories – including Cheddar, Gloucester, Colby, Cheshire, Red Leicester, and more – contain annatto for its yellow to orange hue.

Many different strengths of annatto (norbixin) are available; DDW has a core competency in seed sourcing and annatto processing. Recent DDW colouring innovation includes higher concentration levels and certified organic options.

cheese natural colors natural colours process cheese natural cheese

Process Cheese and Natural Colouring

‘Process cheese’ is a food product category that contains a variety of cheese products including sauces, dips, slices and spreads. An increase in consumer demand for such food items as snacks, prepared meals, and sandwiches, is driving the demand for process cheese products.

Oftentimes, these types of cheese contain FD&C yellow 5 and 6 to deliver a characteristic orange-yellow appearance. However, with the recent consumer demand for simple label ingredients in the food and beverage industry, food technologists are actively developing or reformulating products to contain naturally-derived or nature identical colors in place of FD&C colors.

When switching to naturally-derived or nature identical colors, product developers have a wide variety of choices available to deliver yellow to orange hues, including annatto, apocarotenal, beta-carotene, paprika, and turmeric. To differentiate process cheese in the marketplace or to reach a specific hue, custom color blends may be required.

To find out more about replacing synthetic colours in Process Cheese, fill out the following form to download our White Paper.

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