Food Colour (102) is a synthetic colouring food additive. It is added to a wide range of food products to give them a yellow colour. This colouring is manufactured from coal tar and exists as light orange powder or granules. It is commonly known by the name Tartrazine and is referred to as an azo dye ( a compound formed when two hydrocarbon groups are joined by two nitrogen atoms) and is considered more stable and cheaper to natural food dyes. Hence, it has been quite prevalent in the usage of packaged food products.
Tartrazine causes the highest allergic reactions or intolerance in people especially those who are asthmatics or are intolerant to aspirin. It may cause reactions like migraine, blurred vision, rhinitis, itching and purple skin patches. It has been established that Food Colour (102) when combined with Benzoic acid (E210) in any food product results in hyperactivity in children.(1)
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