Violaxanthin is a natural xanthophyll pigment with an orange color found in a variety of plants including pansies. It is biosynthesized from zeaxanthin by epoxidation. As a food additive it is used under the E number E161e as a food coloring; it is not approved for use in the EU or USA however is approved in Australia and New Zealand (where it is listed under its INS number 161e).
5,6:5′,6′-Diepoxy-5,5′,6,6′-tetrahydro-β,β-carotene-3,3′-diol, Zeaxanthin diepoxide, all-trans-Violaxanthin, E161e
3D model (JSmol)
|E number||E161e (colours)|
|Molar mass||600.85 g/mol|
|Melting point||200 °C (392 °F; 473 K)|
Except where otherwise noted, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C [77 °F], 100 kPa).
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- Merck Index, 11th Edition, 9902.
- UK Food Standards Agency: "Current EU approved additives and their E Numbers". Retrieved 2011-10-27.
- Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code"Standard 1.2.4 - Labelling of ingredients". Retrieved 2011-10-27.
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