1. D. V. Myers and J. C. Howell, "Characterization and Specifications of Caramel Colours: An Overview," Food Chem. Toxicol. 30, 359-363 (1992).

2. J. E. Kassner, "Modern Technologies in the Manufacturer of Certified Food Colors," Food Technol. 41, 74-76 (1987).

3. B. H. Licht, J. Orr, and D. V. Myer, "Characterization of Caramel Color IV," Food Chem. Toxicol. 30, 365-373 (1992).

4. R. T. Linner, "Caramel Coloring: A New Method of Determining its Color Hue and Tinctorial Power," Amer. Soft Drink J., 2630 (1971).


The carotenoids are one of the largest group of pigments produced in nature, second only to the chlorophylls. They are very widespread with more than 100,000,000 tons produced annually in nature. Most of this amount is produced in the form of fucoxanthin in algae in the ocean and the three main carotenoids of green leaves: lutein, violaxan-thin, and neoxanthin (Fig. 1). Other pigments predominate in certain plants, such as lycopene in tomatoes (Fig. 1), capsanthin and capsorubin (Fig. 2) in red peppers, and bixin in annatto (Fig. 2). Colorant preparations have been made from all of these (1), and obviously the composition of the colorant extracts reflects the profile of the starting material. The chemistry and occurrence of the carotenoids is well described in the article entitled Colorants: carotenoids. Carotenoids are probably the best known of the food colorants derived from natural sources (2).

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The Mediterranean Diet Meltdown

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