E122 - Azorubine

Azorubine or carmoisine is a red food dye identified by the number E122. This nitrogenous compound is a disodium salt of hydroxy-1-2 naphthalenesulfonic-4 acid.


E122, also known as Azorubine, is a synthetic red food coloring that belongs to the azo dye group. It is commonly used in the food industry to impart a red or pink color to various products. 

Coloring Agent:

  • Azorubine is used as a food coloring agent to add a red hue to a variety of food and beverage products. It is commonly found in items such as sweets, candies, desserts, and beverages.

Chemical Structure:

  • Azorubine is an azo dye, meaning it contains a specific chemical structure known as the azo group. The chemical name for Azorubine is C.I. Acid Red 14, and its molecular formula is C18H14N2Na2O8S2.

Regulatory Status:

  • Azorubine is approved for use as a food additive in many countries, including those in the European Union. It has an E number (E122) assigned by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) for regulatory purposes.

Health and Safety Considerations:

  • Regulatory authorities, including the EFSA, have established acceptable daily intake (ADI) levels for Azorubine. When used within recommended limits, it is generally considered safe for consumption. However, individuals with sensitivities or allergies may experience adverse reactions.


  • Some people may prefer to avoid artificial food colorings, including Azorubine, due to concerns about potential health effects. In such cases, natural alternatives, such as beet juice, anthocyanin extracts from fruits, or other plant-based colorings, may be used as alternatives in certain food products.


  • In many countries, food manufacturers are required to list Azorubine by its name or its E number (E122) on food labels. This helps consumers identify the presence of the additive in products they may choose to purchase.

Use in Specific Products:

  • Azorubine is often used in conjunction with other food colorings to achieve the desired shades of red or pink in various food and beverage items. It is used for its stability and compatibility with different food formulations.

Data sheet

CAS Number
HS Code
3204 12 00
Red powder
25kg bag

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