Rainbow Blossom Natural Food Markets uses the following list of ingredients as a guideline for approving new products and for reviewing current ones that may have been reformulated.

Criteria definitions

  • acceptable — generally considered safe (excluding allergies/sensitivities that individuals may have)
  • not acceptable — may be harmful to health and/or is a relatively unnecessary additive creating a lower quality food
  • under review — Rainbow Blossom Quality Standards Team is evaluating the status of this item


  1. Astaxanthin in its natural form is the antioxidant that gives wild salmon its color.
  2. Both MSG and autolyzed yeast extract are used as flavor enhancers, and both contain the amino acid glutamate. Glutamate is one of 20 amino acids found widely in all foods at varying levels. Glutamate seems to cause reactions in people when it is isolated and in high concentrations.

    MSG is 100 percent glutamate that has been isolated and then bound to sodium to make a salt that can be added to foods.

    Autolyzed yeast extract contains a mix of free amino acids (including glutamate) but since it's not 100 percent glutamate it does not cause reactions in most people who are sensitive to MSG, other than a few who are extremely sensitive.
  3. Sodium tripolyphosate is used to prevent "thaw drip" and as a binding agent to hold flaky fish products together. It's common in scallops and shrimp. It is a suspected neurotoxin.
  4. Sulfites can be naturally occurring as a byproduct of fermentation in wine and wine products, such as vinegar. Added sulfites may be allowed in non-organic wine and hard cider.