Reason behind allowing 'Natural flavors'


What is the reasoning for allowing foods with ‘natural flavors’?

On the FDA website they state that it may be derived from animal products:

(3) The term natural flavor or natural flavoring means the essential oil, oleoresin, essence or extractive, protein hydrolysate, distillate, or any product of roasting, heating or enzymolysis, which contains the flavoring constituents derived from a spice, fruit or fruit juice, vegetable or vegetable juice, edible yeast, herb, bark, bud, root, leaf or similar plant material, meat, seafood, poultry, eggs, dairy products, or fermentation products thereof, whose significant function in food is flavoring rather than nutritional. Natural flavors, include the natural essence or extractives obtained from plants listed in subpart A of part 582 of this chapter, and the substances listed in 172.510 of this chapter.

Is there a shut from the Rav written on this?


If there is anything of significance in there they would list it as a specific ingredient. So for example, in popcorn you might see natural butter flavor. If there’s a significant amount of butter, it would say butter. They use natural flavors to cover for some junk that they don’t want to list that is clearly not giving enough flavor to make a difference halachically.