Coloring agents are organic substances synthesized in plants and living organisms (natural), or obtained by methods of organic synthesis (synthetic) and used to give a desired colour to different products.
Natural colouring agents – are the substances derived by physical methods from the natural sources (plants, animals, minerals); they represent a mixture of carotenoids, anthocyanins, , flavonoids, chlorophyll and other natural components of the plants containing pigments.
Berries, flowers, leaves, roots could be the raw materials for natural coloring agent production. But their quantity in the raw material is rather low. Due to the latest achievements modern technologies enable extracting the colours with preliminary defined characteristics and highest concentration.
Currently leading manufacturers offer the following natural colouring agents :
Carmine E120, Carotenoids E160a; E160c; E161b, Curcumin E100
Cupper chlorophyll/ chlorophyllin complex E141, Chlorophyl/chlorophyllin E140
Synthetic food colouring agents are organic substances not found in the natural environment and created artificially. Unlike natural ones such coloring agents are heat resistable , give bright and steady colour and biologically inactive. They do not include any flavouring substances or vitamins.
Carmoisin E122, Brilliant red E129, Ponso 4R E124, Yellow sunset E110
Tartrazine E102, Black brilliant E151, Brown HT E155, Blue patent V E131
Blue brilliant E133, Quinolinic yellow E104
Coloring food products are the separate group of coloring agents. These are concentrated juices from the following fruits and vegetables: grapes, black carrot, elderflower, aronia, beetroot, paprika, carrot, spinach, nettle.
Coloring agents are widely used in almost all areas of food industry, as well as in the pharmaceutical industry and in the production of household chemistry and cosmetics.