Papa John's is making a huge change to its ingredients

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Papa John's Pizza Claims to Be 'Nutritious', 'Good for You'

Papa John's has become the first national pizza chain to cut artificial ingredients from its entire menu.

The pizza chain announced on Tuesday that it had removed artificial flavors and synthetic colors from its food menu, including from all pizza ingredients and toppings, desserts, and sauce selections. According to Papa John's, the effort cost the company $100 million in the past year.

"We closed out 2015 announcing our commitment to serve chicken raised without antibiotics and are ringing in the New Year artificial-flavor and synthetic-color free," Sean Muldoon, Papa John's senior vice president of research and development, said in a statement. "We're so proud to be able to show our customers how much we care about what they're eating."

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John Schnatter, Papa John's pizza founder
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Papa John's is making a huge change to its ingredients
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 31: John H. Schnatter, Founder, Chairman & CEO of Papa John's International, Inc. rings the NASDAQ Opening Bell at NASDAQ MarketSite on January 31, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Rob Kim/Getty Images)
INDIANAPOLIS, IN - MAY 24: Papa John's founder and CEO John Schnatter attends the Indy 500 on May 23, 2015 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images)
PARK CITY, UT - DECEMBER 06: John Schnatter attends the Deer Valley Celebrity Skifest held at the Silver Lake Lodge in Deer Valley on December 6, 2014 in Park City, Utah (Photo by Mark Davis/Getty Images)
PARK CITY, UT - DECEMBER 05: (L-R) Actress Eloise Broady, John Schnatter and John Paul DeJoria attend the Deer Valley Celebrity Skifest held at the Empire Lodge on December 5, 2014 in Park City, Utah (Photo by Mark Davis/Getty Images)
IMAGE DISTRIBUTED FOR PAPA JOHN'S - Papa John's founder John Schnatter unveils pepperoni as the fan voted "Most Valuable Pizza" on the NASDAQ video tower in Times Square during Super Bowl week on Friday, Jan. 31, 2014, in New York. (Photo by Jack Dempsey for Papa John's via AP Images)
IMAGE DISTRIBUTED FOR PAPA JOHN'S - Papa John's founder John Schnatter and Archie Manning talk on NFL Radio Row during Super Bowl week on Thursday, Jan. 30, 2014, in New York. (Photo by Jack Dempsey for Papa John's via AP Images)
Papa John's Founder, Chairman and CEO John Schnatter, looks on at the NFL Media Center, promoting Papa John's Super Bowl XLVII Coin Toss Experience, Thursday, Jan. 31, 2013, in New Orleans. Consumers can call "heads" or "tails" for the game's coin toss through 11:59 p.m. PST Saturday at www.papajohns.com or the brand's Facebook page, and if they are correct, they will win a free large Papa John's pizza. Papa John's is giving fans 50 percent off their next pizza offer just for voting.(Photo by Jack Dempsey/Invision for Papa John's/AP Images)
John Schnatter is seen at Papa John's launch of Taylor Swift's Red Album, on Friday, Oct. 26, 2012 in Nashville, Tenn. (Photo by Doug DuKane/Invision for Papa John's/AP Images)
John Schnatter, Founder, Chairman and CEO of Papa John's International, Inc., autographs the t-shirt of an employee at the grand opening of Papa John's 4000th restaurant on Friday Sept. 14, 2012, in New Hyde Park, N.Y. (Photo by Kathy Kmonicek/Invision for Papa John's/AP Images)
John Schnatter, Founder, Chairman and CEO of Papa John's International, Inc., celebrates the grand opening of Papa John's 4000th restaurant on Friday Sept. 14, 2012, in New Hyde Park, N.Y. Commemorative pizzas with the number 4000 were prepared for the event. (Photo by Kathy Kmonicek/Invision for Papa John's/AP Images)
John Schnatter, red shirt, Founder, Chairman and CEO of Papa John's International, Inc., autographs a poster for Peter Mehta, franchise owner of the New Hyde Park store and as a Papa John's employee joins in during the grand opening celebration of Papa John's 4000th restaurant on Friday Sept. 14, 2012, in New Hyde Park, N.Y. (Photo by Kathy Kmonicek/Invision for Papa John's/AP Images)
IMAGE DISTRIBUTED FOR PAPA JOHN'S INTERNATIONAL - New York Yankees catcher Russell Martin congratulates Papa John's Founder, Chairman and CEO John Schnatter after he made a special on-field appearance at New York Yankee Stadium, Friday, Sept. 14, 2012, as part of the Papa John's 4,000th global restaurant celebration throughout New York. (Photo by Diane Bondareff/Invision for Papa John's International/AP Images)
COMMERCIAL IMAGE - In this photograph released by Papa John's on Monday, Jan. 23, 2012, NFL stars Peyton Manning (right), Jerome Bettis (left) and Papa John's Founder, Chairman and CEO John Schnatter enjoy Papa John’s pizza and Pepsi MAX during a recent commercial shoot at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. Louisville-based Papa John's (NASDAQ: PZZA) has announced it will offer everyone in America the chance for a free large Papa John’s pizza and 2-liter Pepsi MAX based on the outcome of the coin toss in Super Bowl XLVI. (AJ Mast/AP Images for Papa John's)
COMMERCIAL IMAGE In this photograph taken by AP Images for Papa John's, Papa John's Founder, Chairman, and CEO John Schnatter, right, acknowledges a food donation announced by Sid Ruckriegel, President of the Papa John's Chicago Marketing Co-op at the Papa John's 3000th North American Store Celebration in Burbank, IL on Monday, October 24, 2011. The co-op donated 3000 canned goods to the Girls Scouts of Greater Chicago and Northwest Indiana on behalf of Papa John’s.(Ross Dettman/AP Images for Papa John's)
FILE - This Aug. 3, 2004, file photo shows Dallas Cowboys team owner Jerry Jones, right, and Papa John's Founder and CEO John Schnatter, left, addressing the media at Cowboys training camp, in Oxnard, Calif. Papa John's International Inc. leapfrogged two larger rivals to land a deal as the official pizza sponsor of the National Football League and the Super Bowl. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez, File)
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 31: John H. Schnatter, Founder, Chairman & CEO of Papa John's International, Inc. rings the NASDAQ Opening Bell at NASDAQ MarketSite on January 31, 2014 in New York City. (Photo by Rob Kim/Getty Images)
NEW YORK - OCTOBER 29: Founder of Papa John's John Schnatter speaks onstage at the Spider-Man and Papa John's Pizza's announcement of 'Hometown Super-Heroes' in Times Square October 29, 2007 in New York City. (Photo by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images)
LOUISVILLE, KY - MAY 06: Paps John's CEO John Schnatter attends the 132nd Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs on May 6, 2006 in Louisville, Kentucky. (Photo by Paul Hawthorne/Getty Images)
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The company has pledged to cut antibiotics in chicken toppings and poppers by this summer.

Many chains in the past year have announced commitments to cutting antibiotics, additives, and artificial flavors from their menus. Last week, Panera Bread announced it had cut artificial additives from its soups as part of plans to cut all artificial preservatives, sweeteners, colors, and flavors from its menu by the end of 2016. Other chains that have made similar commitments include Subway, Taco Bell, and Noodles and Co.

In May, Pizza Hut announced plans to remove artificial colors and flavors from pizzas (though not the entire menu) by the end of July.

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