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Food Addit Contam Part A Chem Anal Control Expo Risk Assess. 2013;30(4):643-53. doi: 10.1080/19440049.2013.768358. Epub 2013 Mar 25.

Exposure assessment of synthetic colours approved in Korea.

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  • 1Department of Bioscience and Biotechnology, Konkuk University, 1 Hwayang-dong, Gwangjin-gu, Seoul 143-701, Republic of Korea.


The dietary intakes of nine synthetic food colours--amaranth, erythrosine, Allura Red, Ponceau 4R, tartrazine, Sunset Yellow FCF, Fast Green FCF, Brilliant Blue FCF and indigo carmine--permitted in Korea were estimated based on food consumption data for consumers and their concentrations in processed foods. The estimated daily intakes (EDIs) by Korean consumers were compared with the acceptable daily intakes (ADIs) of the colours. Among 704 foods sampled, 471 contained synthetic colours. The most highly consumed synthetic colours were Allura Red and tartrazine; the highest EDI/ADI ratios were found for amaranth, erythrosine and Allura Red. The EDIs of infants and children were higher than those of adults. The main food categories containing colours were beverages and liquor for adults, and beverages, chocolate and ice cream for infants and children. For average Korean consumers, the EDIs were not greater than 2.5% of their corresponding ADIs, although the EDI of a conservative consumer in the upper 95th percentile reached 37% of the ADI.

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