E129

Read It Before You Eat It: How to Decode Food Labels and Make the Healthiest Choice Every Time Food Additives, Nutrients, and Supplements A to Z

E129 is a food additive approved by the European Union (EU). It is used as a synthetic colouring agent in food and drink products, as well as in medicine and cosmetics.

The common name for E129 is allura red AC.

E129 is an azo dye that gives products an orange/red colouration. It was originally introduced to act as an alternative to amaranth (E123).

This colouring has been linked to bladder cancer in mice, following laboratory testing. E129 has been banned in Norway, Germany, Denmark, Switzerland, Sweden, France, Austria and Belgium. E129 has the same negative effects as any other azo dye, but to a lesser extent.

Examples of food and drink products that sometimes include E129:

  • biscuits
  • cakes
  • sweets
  • soft drinks

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