FD&C red #40 is a red azo dye that goes by several names including Allura Red, Food Red 17, C.I. 16035, and Allura Red AC.
- It is used as a food dye and has the E number E129.
- Red food coloring is the most commonly used dye in the U.S., according to Center for Science in the Public Interest. It is approved by the Food and Drug Administration for use in candy, cereal, baked goods, gelatin powder, drugs and cosmetics.
- According to the Center for Science in the Public Interest, Red 40 and other AFCs can cause allergic reactions in some people. Research shows they can also cause hyperactivity in children and immune system tumors in mice. Red 40 contains p-Cresidine, which the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services says is “reasonably anticipated” to be a human carcinogen.
- One study found that Red 40 lowers reproductive success in rats. It also reduced parental and offspring weight, decreased brain weight, and lowered chances for survival in newborn rats. The authors said the colorant showed evidence of physical and behavioral toxicity in developing rats that consumed Red 40 as 10 percent of their diet. The Environmental Working Group lists the overall hazard level for Red 40 as low. Other entities claim it is highly toxic, most importantly because people are unaware of how much they are exposed to it.
Allura Red, Food Red 17, C.I. 16035, and Allura Red AC
Source: Wikipedia, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allura_Red_AC