Does Sunny D Have Dye In It?

Skip Sunny D at the grocery store if you are looking to avoid consuming artificial dyes.

Sunny D Tangy Original and all other flavors listed below have at least one color of synthetic dye in them.

Artificial Dyes in Sunny D

FlavorsDyes (Yes or No?)Dyes Used
Tangy OriginalYesYellow 5, Yellow 6
Smooth OrangeYesYellow 5, Yellow 6
Orange StrawberryYesYellow 6, Red 40
Orange MangoYesYellow 5, Yellow 6
Orange PeachYesYellow 5, Yellow 6, Red 40
MangoYesYellow 5, Yellow 6
Orange PineappleYesYellow 5, Yellow 6
Fruit PunchYesRed 40, Blue 1
Blue RaspberryYesBlue 1
WatermelonYesRed 40
LemonadeYesYellow 5
Raspberry LemonadeYesRed 40, Blue 1
Mixed Berry LimeadeYesRed 40, Blue 1
Ingredients can change without notice. Read the actual product label ingredients for the most accurate list of dyes used in Sunny D beverages.

Why Are Dyes In Sunny D?

The primary ingredients in Sunny D are water and high-fructose corn syrup. It’s not real orange juice in case you were wondering. The actual real juice in it is minimal and doesn’t provide enough natural coloring to help the products stand out on store shelves.

The manufacturer of Sunny D adds dyes to its beverages to mimic the color of the flavors. For example, consumers expect orange flavored beverages to be orange in color.

You can imagine how it might hurt sales if Sunny D Tangy Original, for example, was made white or brown in color as oppose to orange as consumers expect an orange flavored drink to appear.

Other factors come into play in regard to dyes used in beverages such as brand recognition and color stability. Certainly their enhancement of visual appeal to meet consumer expectations is the primary reasons why dyes are in Sunny D.

Sunny D is not unique in using artificial dyes in its beverages. Gatorade, Fanta, and Mtn Dew are just a few examples of other beverages that have color additives.

How To Tell If Dyes Are In Sunny D?

To determine if artificial food dyes are used in a specific product like Sunny D, you can follow these steps:

  1. Read the Ingredient List: The ingredient list on the product label is the most reliable source of information. Look for the presence of artificial food dyes by examining the list. Common artificial food dye names include Yellow 5, Yellow 6, Red 40, and Blue 1, among others. If any of these dye names appear in the ingredient list, it indicates the use of artificial food dyes in the product. The FDA requires disclosure of color additives in the list of ingredients.
  2. Look for Natural Alternatives: Some products may use natural food colorings derived from sources like fruit or vegetable extracts. In this case, the ingredient list may specify natural colorants such as “carrot juice concentrate” or “beet juice extract.” If you don’t see artificial dye names in the ingredient list and instead find natural sources of color, it suggests the absence of artificial dyes.
  3. Contact the Manufacturer: If you’re unable to determine whether a specific dye is used from the product label or if you have specific questions about the ingredients, you can contact the manufacturer. Many companies have customer service departments or websites where you can find information about the product’s ingredients, including any artificial food dyes.
  4. Online Resources: There are also online resources and databases that provide information about the ingredients in various food and beverage products. You can search for Sunny D and its specific flavors to find details about the presence of artificial food dyes.

Keep in mind that product formulations can change over time, so it’s essential to check the product label or contact the manufacturer for the most up-to-date information. Additionally, if you have specific dietary restrictions or allergies, always double-check the ingredient list to ensure a product meets your dietary needs.

Are Artificial Food Dyes Safe?

The safety of artificial food dyes, including those used in drinks like Sunny D, has been a topic of ongoing debate and research.

While regulatory agencies such as the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have generally deemed approved food dyes as safe for consumption within established limits, concerns have arisen regarding potential health effects, especially in sensitive individuals.

Some studies have suggested possible links between artificial food dyes and behavioral issues in children, although the evidence remains inconclusive and controversial. As such, individuals with sensitivities or allergies to specific dyes may want to exercise caution and check product labels carefully.

We suggest reading these resources to learn more about the potential harmful side effects of consuming artificial dyes:

Food Dyes: Harmless or Harmful? (Source: Healthline)

The Last Word: Are Artificial Food Dyes Bad for You? (Source: Everyday Health)

Image Credit – Mike Mozart/flickr