All about Food Coloring


Food coloring, or color additive, is any dye, pigment or substance that imparts color when it is added to food or drink. They come in many forms consisting of liquids, powders, gels, and pastes. Food coloring is used both in commercial food production and in domestic cooking. Food colorants are also used in a variety of non-food applications including cosmetics, pharmaceuticals, home craft projects, and medical devices.

The color of a food product can have a big influence on how tempting we find it. Food manufacturers take great care in making sure the color of their products just right. After all, selecting the perfect color can help make a product stand out on the supermarket shelves, and if it stands out for the right reasons, it’s more likely to end up in a consumer’s shopping basket. Traditionally, artificial colorants have been the substances of choice for many manufacturers when adding color to their products. But today, there is a bit of a revolution going on in the food industry.

Coloring foods and food colors-more different than they sound

The definition of a coloring food isn’t as simple as just being any old coloring substance obtained from a product, such as a fruit, vegetable or herb, that can be eaten as a food. The characteristics required for a substance to be classed as a coloring food are far more specific, and some colorants that we might think of as being natural - carotenes, curcumin and lycopene, for example, do not come under this category.

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Nicola B
Editorial Team
Journal of  Biochemistry and Biotechnology