Agricultural industries: Main additives

Agricultural industries: Main additives

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Main additives used in the food industry

By food additive is meant any substance, normally not consumed as a food as such and not used as a typical ingredient of food and regardless of the fact that it has a nutritional value, which is intentionally added to food products for technological purposes, eventually becoming a component of these foods.
The law classified additives into different categories according to their functions. Their quantity is established only by the manufacturer on the basis of their good manufacturing standards with the exception of some substances such as nitrates whose minimum doses are already established by law.
On the label they are indicated with the name or with the European abbreviation consisting of an E followed by three digits. The additives used in the food world, and permitted by law, are more than two thousand, and most of them have natural origins.
Here are the main additives:

Dyes (from E 100 to E 199) - They color the product or its surface only, to make it more inviting. Most of them are of synthetic origin.

Preservatives (from E 200 to E 299) - Slow down or prevent the deterioration of food by bacteria, yeasts and molds.

Antioxidants (from E 300 to E 322) - They slow down or prevent the oxidation process deriving from oxygen in the air.

Acidity correctors (from E 325 to E 385) - Used to modify the acidity of the product.

Thickeners, emulsifiers, stabilizers (from E 400 to E 495) - Polyphosphates, agar agar, pectins. These substances keep compact products that tend to divide into their different components.

flavoring - They don't have a code name. They give particular smells and flavors to the product. Italian law provides that labels produced in the laboratory with a similar formula are generally indicated on the labels as natural flavors.

Flavor enhancers (E 620) - They are used to flavor foods that are substantially tasteless or have lost some of their original taste. Sodium glutamate is one of the most common and is widely used in the preparation of some sausages and in broth nuts.

Sweeteners - Saccharin, aspartame, cyclamate, acesulfame, xylitol.

Surfactants - Alginates, lecithins.

For yeasts - Yeast nutrients: ammonium salts (diamonium phosphate, ammonium sulphate, thiamine-dichloro-hydrate.

Surface treatment - Paraffin, shellac, slaked lime.

Stimulants - Caffeine, alkaloids.

Mineral salts - Sodium salts, potassium salts.

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