Natural colours
for beverages

Choosing natural colours for beverages is greatly influenced by pH. While colours like emSeal® paprika and beta-carotene can withstand a wide pH range, anthocyanin-based colours like Amaize® red will appear bright red at a pH around 3.0 but will shift to more purple tones as the pH increases. Enhanced beverages often include ingredients such as vitamins, electrolytes, or polyphenols, all of which interact differently with natural colours, so work with our applications scientists to find the best solution for your beverage.
The most common colours for sparkling beverages are brown, red, orange, and yellow so there are many stable natural colour options available, including anthocyanins emSeal® paprika and beta-carotene and caramel colours. Cola concentrates can have a pH of 2.0 or lower, so it is best to use class IV caramels or certain class I caramels due to their excellent acid stability.
Syrups or cordials are versatile beverage ingredients that can be used to prepare a myriad of coffee drinks, cocktails, mocktails, and more. Since they are concentrated there is less water activity, providing for greater colour stability. However, it can be more difficult to fully disperse colours or match target shades in both the concentrate and the diluted beverage. While some natural colours will work well in acidified syrups at low pH levels, other natural colours, like spirulina, should be added to non-acidified syrups to prevent precipitation or fading.
red natural colours in sports beverage
yellow natural colours in lemonade beverage
green natural colours in kiwi beverage
Since  protein and dry beverage mixes are typically in packaging that protects them from light, there are a wide variety of colour options available, including spirulina and curcumin. Low hue powders are often preferred because they have a bright surface shade that will show up in the powder mix, while still providing vibrant colours to the reconstituted beverage.
Milk and dairy alternative beverages have a neutral pH, so  natural colour sources such as emSeal® beta-carotene, annatto, turmeric, carmine, and beet all work well. Yoghurt-based beverages, such as kefir, have a lower pH, opening the door to fruit or vegetable-based anthocyanins like Amaize® or Vegebrite® black carrot. If your dairy or dairy alternative beverage will undergo pasteurisation, be sure to choose heat stable colours for best results.
Since there are tons of suitable natural colours for beverages, contact us to get the best colour to match your flavour or labelling needs. 
Looking for more information on how to apply natural colours to your application? Check out this article on our learning center for the top 5 considerations when using natural colours for beverages.
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