Is E160e Halal or Haram?

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Key Takeaways

📌 E160e, also known as beta-apo-8′-carotenal, is a food coloring agent that provides an orange-red hue to various food products, such as drinks, desserts, snacks, soups, and sauces.
📌 E160e is approved for use in foods in many regions, with specific regulations and guidelines in place to ensure safe and compliant usage. It is essential to check regional regulations for maximum allowable levels.

📌 E160e’s Halal status can vary based on the manufacturing source and process. In its pure form, it is considered Halal, but its Halal status in commercial products depends on the other ingredients used, including emulsifiers and encapsulants.

E160e, also known as beta-apo-8′-carotenal, is a food additive that serves as a coloring agent. With its halal status being questioned by some, this article will explore what E160e is, how it’s made, its health effects, guidelines, dosage, and whether it’s considered halal or haram.

What Is E160e?

E160e, or beta-apo-8′-carotenal, is a carotenoid used as a food coloring agent. Its chemical formula is C30H40O and it has an orange-red pigment. In foods, it provides a red-orange shade.

E160e is soluble in oils and fats, but not water. It is used as a coloring in products like drinks, desserts, snacks, soups, and sauces. The food additive helps provide an appetizing color to foods.

Chemical Structure

The chemical structure of E160e consists of a long unsaturated hydrocarbon chain that contains 11 conjugated double bonds. It also has ringed end groups. The carotenoid contains 30 carbon atoms, 40 hydrogen atoms, and 1 oxygen atom.

The unique structure allows E160e to absorb light in the blue-green and violet range, causing it to reflect orange and red light. This gives it its distinct coloring properties.

What Is E160e Made From?

E160e is derived from various natural sources and made through manufacturing processes. Some common natural sources are:

  • Algae – Haematococcus pluvialis, Dunaliella salina
  • Yeast – Phaffia rhodozyma
  • Carrots
  • Pumpkins
  • Sweet potatoes

To make E160e commercially, manufacturers extract and isolate carotenoids from these sources. They then convert the carotenoids into pure beta-apo-8’-carotenal through chemical reactions like esterification, saponification, and crystallization.

E160e can also be produced synthetically through chemical processes using petrochemicals. However, synthetic forms need to be identified as such on labels in some regions.

Possible Side Effects

In typical food amounts, E160e is not associated with adverse health effects. It has been approved as safe for consumption by health authorities.

However, high doses of supplements may potentially cause side effects like skin discoloration, nausea, and liver damage according to some studies. More research is needed on the impacts of concentrated doses.

Those with carotenoid allergies should avoid E160e as well. Allergies are not common but can cause symptoms like itching, hives, swelling, and trouble breathing in sensitive individuals.

Regulations and Guidelines

E160e is approved for use in foods in most regions, including:

  • United States – Considered GRAS (generally recognized as safe) by the FDA
  • Canada – Acceptable for use in foods
  • Europe – Approved food additive within EU regulations
  • Australia/New Zealand – Permitted food coloring under FSANZ standards

The normal maximum level allowed is usually around 100 mg/kg of food. However, regulations can differ between countries, so specific limits should be checked.

Some governments, like the EU, also require E160e derived from petrochemical sources to be labeled as such. This helps consumers distinguish natural versus synthetic additives.

Dosage and Administration

The Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA) has set an acceptable daily intake (ADI) for E160e at 0-0.5 mg/kg body weight. This ADI is not intended to be achieved entirely from E160e but from total carotenoids in the diet.

Within the ADI, E160e is added to foods like desserts, sauces, and drinks at concentrations from 25 to 100 mg/kg. It can also be found in supplement form at levels of around 5-20 mg per capsule.

Is E160e Halal or Haram?

In its pure form, E160e is considered halal. However, its halal status can become syubhat (doubtful) when it is used in commercial food products.

Whether E160e remains halal depends on the other ingredients it is combined with. If it’s used in the form of an emulsion, its halal status is contingent on the type of emulsifier employed.

Similarly, if E160e is used in encapsulated form, its halal status hinges on the type of encapsulant utilized. So, while E160e itself is halal, its application in various food products necessitates a careful examination of the accompanying ingredients and additives to ensure compliance with halal dietary requirements.

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E160e or beta-apo-8’-carotenal is a food coloring that provides orange and red hues. When used in moderation, it does not appear to pose health risks. However high amounts may potentially cause adverse effects.

Its halal status depends on the manufacturing source and process, with natural plant-derived forms more likely to be considered halal. Being aware of the origins and uses of E160e can help inform dietary choices.


What is the source of E160e?

E160e can be derived from natural sources like algae, yeast, carrots, pumpkins, and sweet potatoes. It is also made synthetically from petrochemicals. Manufacturers must specify on labels if E160e is synthetic.

Is E160e safe for consumption?

In typical food amounts, E160e does not appear to be associated with risks and is considered safe by health authorities. But supplemental doses may potentially cause side effects, so moderation is recommended.

What are some common food products that contain E160e?

E160e is found in foods like flavored drinks, ice cream, candies, breakfast cereals, orange juice, soups, luncheon meats, and smoked fish.

What is the CAS number of E160e?

The CAS (Chemical Abstracts Service) registry number for E160e or beta-apo-8′-carotenal is 11070-24-1.

Is E160e banned in any country?

E160e does not appear to be banned in any major country or region. It is approved for use in the United States, Canada, the European Union, and elsewhere when meeting respective safety regulations.

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