Starbucks’ newest line of beverages, Oleato, which feature extra virgin olive oil in coffee, recently launched in Italy as a series of beverages. In this episode of the Xtalks Food Podcast, Sydney talks about the beverages in the Oleato line, which include a latte, espresso, cold brew, iced shaken espresso and iced cortado. Beverages in the Oleato range are made with a spoonful of olive oil in coffee, adding 120 calories to the total calorie count. However, adding fat to coffee is not new, nor is olive oil in coffee. Coffee drinkers can add fat the old-fashioned way, with cream, milk or even butter, and recipes for olive oil-infused coffee exist online. But Starbucks is hoping that people will try the Oleato line because they want to know what the concoction tastes like or perhaps because they’ve heard that there are health benefits to extra virgin olive oil. Sydney and Sarah discuss whether they would try the Oleato line and give credit to Starbucks for introducing olive oil-infused coffees for those that want to avoid dairy or just try something new.
Also in this episode, Sydney talks about the US Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) recent draft guidance for plant-based milk labels. The guidance states that brands should add text on the front of the package indicating how they differ nutritionally from cow’s milk. For years, dairy producers have been probing the FDA to crack down on plant-based drinks and other products that they believe take advantage of animal-based foods and cloud the real meaning of “milk.” As such, the draft guidance suggests that plant-based milk companies include a statement explaining how the product compares with dairy milk. The FDA has deemed this disclosure essential because the nutritional composition of plant-based milks varies widely within and across types and many of them don’t contain the same levels of key nutrients as milk. Sydney and Sarah discuss the health implications of replacing traditional milk with plant-based milk for children, but posit that the draft guidance also has some shortcomings.
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