25 October 2021
News Ticker

E123 – Amaranth

Number: E123

Name: Amaranth

Other names: Food Red 9, Cl 16185, FD&C Red No.2, Acid Red 27, Azorubin S

Function: Colour

Description: is a dark red to purple colour

Origin: synthetic azo dye


  • cosmetics (lipstick, rouge)
  • sometimes we can find it in cakes, jelly powder, breakfast cereals, non-alcoholic and alcoholic drinks, caviar and blackcurrants products

Daily intake: up to 0,5 mg/kg body weight

Side effects:

  • it appears to cause allergic or intolerant reactions, particularly amongst those with an aspirin intolerance and asthma sufferers
  • it is a histamine liberator and may intensify symptoms of asthma
  • in combination with benzoates, it is also implicated in hyperactivity in children
  • a connection between tumours and amaranth has been established in rats, but not (un)proven in humans
  • many countries have restricted the use pending further tests, and the ADI has been reduced to 0.5 mg/kg


  • can be consumed by all religious groups, vegans and vegetarians
  • very soluble in water