Oh, you're all talking about something I think about a LOT. Have any of you read "Fast Food Nation"? In the meat of the book, the author explains how the flavorings and colorings are made. You know, how they flavor the jelly bellies? It's all chemicals, and has more to do with smell than natural flavorings. See, a flavor can be 'natural', but most chemical components ARE natural, they're found in the earth. ARSENIC is natural, but you won't catch me eating it! So, the 'natural strawberry flavor' isn't even strawberry at all but something concocted to make your brain THINK you're tasting strawberry. It's all a magician's trick. And, guess what else the author tells us? The stuff isn't really regulated the way that real FOOD is regulated! So it's not really all that well tested for safety.
We make our own bread here (and English muffins too), and our own yogurt, and our own jam and use fruit to flavor our yogurt. We already have chickens and are going to get a couple goats for dairy. I try to buy my butter at a farm store, boy that sure tastes different from even Cabot. We make our own ice cream too...milk plus cream plus whatever amount of sugar you like plus natural flavorings (real vanilla sticks are my favorite).
Jam is easy to make...you put fruit and some lemon juice and sugar in a pan and boil and mash it to the consistency you like over low heat. Then after about half and hour you pour it into a glass jar, let it cool, and put it in the fridge.
You can make ketchup too. It's easy if you have fresh tomatoes.
I must confess, I put red food coloring into the icing I used on my Valentine cookies.
On St. Patrick's Day we make green pancakes.
At Christmastime I make all different colors of icing for our cookies.
Most children like to make their own ice cream and ketchup and English muffins. Once they taste homemade, they might never want the processed stuff again.