Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Natural food dyes of lycopene

Human main dietary source of lycopene is the ripe red tomato. Lycopene is also the main pigment in paprika, grapefruit, and rose hip.

Lycopene is an excellent natural coloring agent, covering the range of yellow, through orange, and up to red. As yellow-to-orange color, it is several times more potent than β–carotene, while as red color, lycopene is unmatched by any other natural coloring pigment available to the food industry.

Red ripe tomatoes
Thus, lycopene performs as dual functions in the formulation of food products, serving both as a bioactive ingredient and as a natural food color additive. Lycopene is used as a food coloring in the broad range of food categories for which it is permitted, including beverages, confectionery, causes, snacks, seafood products, soups and dietary supplements.

Lycopene is an intermediate in the biosynthesis of all dicylcic carotenoids, including β–carotene. In principle therefore, for commercial production, blocking the cyclization reaction and the cyclase enzyme by mutation or inhibition will led to the accumulation of lycopene.
Natural food dyes of lycopene
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