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Frequently Asked Questions

What are complexing agents and anti-foaming agents?


These are categories of food additives. Food additives are substances added intentionally to foodstuffs to perform certain technological functions. They are grouped by their function.

Complexing agents, also called “sequestrants” are substances which form chemical complexes with metallic ions. Sequestrants are used e.g. to stabilize fats and oils which undergo rancidity and reversion in the presence of the metals copper and iron. By chelating (sequestering) metals, oxidation is slowed or entirely prevented. Calcium-Dinatrium-EDTA E385 is the most used one.

“Anti-foaming agents” are substances which prevent or reduce foaming; e.g. when jams are boiled, E 471 (Mono- and diglycerides of fatty acids) are often used as an anti-foaming agent.

Food additives and flavorings


The European Food Information Council (EUFIC) is a non-profit organisation which communicates science-based information on nutrition and health, food safety and quality, to help consumers to be better informed when choosing a well-balanced, safe and healthful diet.

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This site was last updated 26/05/2016
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