Kraft plans to remove artificial preservatives and synthetic colors from all its varieties of macaroni & cheese by the end of 2016.

NORTHFIELD, ILL. — Kraft Foods Group, Inc. plans to remove artificial preservatives and synthetic colors from Original Kraft Macaroni & Cheese Dinner by January 2016. Instead of Yellow 5 and Yellow 6, the company will use colors sourced from spices such as paprika, annatto and turmeric.

The changes are the latest steps Kraft is taking to appeal to consumer demand for simple ingredients and improved nutrition. In 2014, the company relaunched its Boxed Shapes Macaroni & Cheese products with lower sodium, reduced saturated fat, more whole grains and no synthetic colors, and has since removed artificial preservatives.

All varieties of Kraft Macaroni & Cheese, including Shapes, Cups, Original Cups, Premium Flavors and Easy Mac will debut nationally later in 2016 without artificial colors, preservatives and synthetic colors.

“Listening, extensive research and continuous improvement have been part of the Kraft Mac & Cheese 75-year heritage,” said Triona Schmelter, vice-president of marketing, Meals. “From packaging like convenient Cups to products like Deluxe, Organic and Whole Grain to light prep instructions, we’ve innovated this iconic brand through the years to remain North America’s favorite Mac & Cheese.”

Kraft has been active in removing undesirable ingredients from its stable of brands. Recently, the company said it had replaced the high-fructose corn syrup in original Capri Sun juice drinks with sugar. Kraft also removed the artificial sweetener sucralose from the brand’s Roarin’ Waters line of flavored water beverages and replaced the ingredient with stevia leaf extract.

In the past two years, Kraft also has relaunched its Philadelphia cream cheese line without artificial ingredients and removed artificial preservatives from select Kraft Singles sliced cheese.