Meat products or meat preparations play virtually no role for humans as a source of synthetic colorants. Of natural dyes, curcumin (E 100) in a maximum quantity of 20 mg/kg, cochineal (E 120) at a maximum dose of 100 mg/kg, carotenes (E 160a) with a limit of 20 mg/kg and paprika extract (E160c) with a limit of 10 mg/kg are permitted for cooked sausages. Caramel and betalain red in quantum satis can be used. No azo-dyes must be added to conventional cooked meat products prepared in the Czech Republic. Dyes are subjected to a number of tests before they can be used in the food industry. Acute, subchronic and chronic toxicity, carcinogenic effects, mutagenicity, teratogenicity, reproductive toxicity, accumulation in the body, effects on the immune system are monitored. On the basis of constantly new knowledge, it is necessary to regularly evaluate the potential toxicity of food colors and subsequently revise the rules for their application.
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