With respect to vanillin, I fully agree with Larisa 67. I am rather too fond of dairy-free dark chocolate and usually puchase Lindt Excellence 70% Cocoa, which contains natural Bourbon vanilla beans. When New Zealand based Whittakers began selling their 72% Dark Ghana slabs in Australia at less than half the price per gram of Lindt, I decided to give it a go. But every single time I did so, within 36 hours of consuming their chocolate, I became almost psychotic. I carefully studied both labels. They appeared to have the same ingredients. Then I suddenly noticed one extra word - "flavour" - on the Whittaker's packaging so I telephoned Whittakers and asked exactly what flavour they used. Their answer was "vanillin". At that stage, I had never even heard of vanillin. I immediately consulted a book by Australian additives expert Sue Dengate and was informed that vanillin was generally OK. But this contradicted what I knew was happening to me whenever I consumed the Whittakers chocolate! So I googled" vanillin +anger" and "vanillin +rage" and came up with thousands of hits. World economic crisis or not, I now studiously avoid any chocolate that lists vanillin or simply the word "flavour" as an ingredient!
Artificial additives like artificial colors and flavors in sweets & artificial vanilla (called vanillin) in chocolate are the cause of behavior issues with children. My kids become very aggressive if they eat sweets with artificial additives or artificial vanilla, which are in most all of the mainstream candies kids have access to. There are all natural candies available and parents should look for these to give their kids. Sugar/sweets are not the culprit, it is the non-food petroleum based artificial additives causing the problems. I am a volunteer for The Feingold Assn. of the U.S. (a 30 yr old non-profit) and help 100's of families each year take artificial additives out of their children's diets. The families I help, see improvements in behavior, learning and health when these harmful additives are removed. They do have an addictive quality like most chemicals do, and many kids actually go through a detox when 1st starting the Feingold program, but the results are so worth it. More info an be found at www.feingold.org .