What is Erythorbic Acid (E315) in Food? Uses, Safe, Side effects

What is Erythorbic Acid (E315) in Food? Uses, Safe, Side effects


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Irthorbic Acid, or Erythorbic Acid (E315), is a food additive that is widely used in the food industry. It is a commonly used additive and plays an important role in natural soda pop, frozen vegetables and canned fruits. Being an oxidant (antioxidant), it helps protect wine, beer, fruit juices and many other processed foods from being degraded by oxygen or rancidity. Isn’t that interesting? But how much exactly do you know about erythorbic acid — its uses, safety and side effects.

What is erythorbic acid?


Erythorbic acid is a vitamin-like antioxidant that helps to prevent food from spoiling. It is commonly used in foods such as cheese, breads and fruit juices. It can also be used to preserve meat and fish products, such as frankfurters and luncheon meats.

Erythorbic acid does not occur naturally in foods, but it is commercially produced by fermenting glucose with yeast. The resulting product is then purified using water extraction and crystallization techniques.

Erythorbic acid was first identified in 1923 by German chemist Otto Kuhlmann (1874-1951). He named it erythroascorbic acid because he believed it was related to ascorbic acid (vitamin C). The name later changed to erythorbic acid when scientists discovered that erythroascorbic acid was not actually a member of the vitamin C family.

How is erythorbic acid made?


Erythorbic acid is an antioxidant used in the food and pharmaceutical industries. It is a synthesized version of ascorbic acid, vitamin C.

Erythorbic acid is produced from glucose by fermentation using yeast or bacteria. The fermentation process involves two steps: first, a sugar molecule is split into two smaller sugar molecules; second, these smaller sugars are oxidized to produce erythorbic acid.

In the first step, glucose is converted into glucuronic acid and carbon dioxide. In the second step, hydrogen peroxide and sulfuric acid are added to the glucuronic acid solution, which then undergoes a reaction that produces erythorbic acid crystals.



Erythorbic acid (E 330) is a non-glutathione-derived antioxidant commonly used as food additive to protect color and flavor. It is produced by the oxidation of erythrose, which is an intermediate in the pentose phosphate pathway.

The chemical formula for erythorbic acid is C4H4O4. The molecular weight is 174.15 g/mol, and its structural formula is shown below:


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AppearanceWhite to slightly yellow crystalline solid which darkens gradually on exposure to light.
Other namesD-Isoascorbic acid; D-Araboascorbic acid
CAS number89-65-6
Chemical formulaC6H8O6
Molecular weight176.13
PKaIt is a diprotic acid having pKa’s 11.34 and 4.04.
  • In water: 40 g in 100 mL water at 25 °C.
  • In organic solvents: Soluble in alcohol, pyridine; moderately soluble in acetone; slightly soluble in glycerol

What is the application of erythorbic acid?


Erythorbic acid is a food additive used for its antioxidant properties. It inhibits formation of nitrosamines, which are formed when nitrites (food preservatives) react with amines in meat products. The food industry uses this ingredient to help prevent the formation of carcinogenic compounds called nitrosamines, which can form in some processed meats. Erythorbic acid is also used as a preservative and antioxidant in many processed foods, such as potato chips, snack foods and cereals.



Erythorbic acid is one of the most widely used food preservatives in the world. It is commonly used to prevent discoloration and browning in foods such as potatoes, apples, pears, and other fruits. It is also used in pickles and baked goods to help prevent spoilage by microorganisms such as yeast and molds.

Meat products


Erythorbic acid can be found in meat products such as sausages, hams and bacon as it helps to prevent discoloration of these foods during processing or storage. It can also be used as an additive in poultry feed to enhance pigmentation during slaughtering process.

Provide a bright red color

The traditional method of preserving meat products and achieving a bright red color entails adding nitrate. This can interact with amines in the human body to form a carcinogen nitrosamine, which is harmful to our health.

Reduce nitrosamines

When erythorbic acid is combined with nitrite, the production of nitrosamines can be significantly reduced.

In addition, it can stabilize the color of meat.

According to Mintel GNDP, nearly 5,000 out of 1 million products sold in Europe contain erythorbic acid or sodium erythorbate in meat products or products that contain meat as an ingredient (e.g. pizza, ready-to-eat meat meals, meat-based spreads and filled pasta).

Fruits and Vegetable Processing


Erythorbic acid is added to fruits and vegetables prior to processing such as canning or dehydration to prevent discoloration caused by oxidation reactions. This compound can also be added directly into the wastewater stream of food processing plants before discharging into nearby rivers.

Drink and Beer


Erythorbic acid is an important antioxidant which can inhibit the oxidation of vitamin C in beverages. It can also maintain the stability of beer and wine. In addition, it can help preserve the color and flavor of foodstuffs and make them healthier. For example, erythorbic acid can be used to prevent browning of apple juice, grapes, citrus fruits and apricots; prevent darkening of tea leaves; prevent discoloration of ground meat; prevent degradation of starch during frying etc..



Erythorbic acid is used in cosmetic products such as facial cream, sunscreen lotion and sunblock cream to inhibit oxidation of lipids, which helps prevent skin from aging.

Is erythorbic acid Safe to eat?


Erythorbic acid is a type of food additive used to prevent browning in foods, particularly fruits and vegetables like apples, apricots, grapes, strawberries and other berries. It’s often found in processed foods like fruit juices and soft drinks.

Erythorbic acid is generally considered safe for human consumption by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) at levels of less than 200 parts per million (ppm). That means you can safely consume up to 1 gram of erythorbic acid per day without any adverse effects on your health.



When used in food and feed production in accordance with good manufacturing practices, it is generally recognized as safe (GRAS).

Erythorbic acid can be used as an antimicrobial agent, antioxidant, color or coloring adjunct, curing or pickling agent, flavor enhancer, flavoring agent or adjuvant, etc.



A food additive erythorbic acid (E 315) is approved by the European Commission as an “additive other than colours and sweeteners”, according to Commission Regulation (EU) No 231/2012.

Safety re-evaluation in 2016


After reviewing genotoxicity, carcinogenicity, and other studies, EFSA concluded that there is no need to revise the current ADI of 6 mg/kg bw/day. Erythorbic acid (E 315) and sodium erythorbate (E 316) would not pose any safety concerns at the approved or reported levels.

Authorised Uses


It may be found in the following foods:

  • Cured and preserved meat products
  • Frozen, deep-frozen fish with red skin
  • Preserved and semi-preserved fish products

Food Standards Australia New Zealand


In Australia and New Zealand, it has the code number 315 and is approved for use.



Food grade Specification and function class: Antioxidant.

Acceptable Daily Intake: The ADI “not specific” set was created in 1990.

What are the possible side effects of erythorbic acid?


Erythorbic Acid Side Effects

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the following side effects of ascorbic acid:

  • Diarrhea
  • Heartburn
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Allergic reactions including rash, itching, hives and swelling of the face, lips and tongue
  • Ringing in the ears (tinnitus). This is more common in people who take high doses of vitamin C for long periods of time.
  • Cataracts. This is a clouding of the lens that covers your eye. It can develop over time or be present at birth. Some studies suggest that taking large amounts of vitamin C may increase your risk for cataracts. Other studies have not found this link between cataracts and vitamin C intake.
  • High blood pressure (hypertension). In one study, people with high blood pressure who took 1 gram per day of vitamin C had a slight increase in systolic blood pressure compared to those who didn’t take any supplements. Studies haven’t shown that taking large amounts of vitamin C increases your risk for developing high blood pressure.

Where does erythorbic acid come from?


Erythorbic Acid is a naturally occurring antioxidant, which can be found in a variety of foods and plants. It is often used as an additive in food products, especially those containing fruit or vegetables. Erythorbic acid is also known as vitamin C-2, because it has many of the same properties as vitamin C, but it is not technically a vitamin.

There are two main sources of erythorbic acid:

1. Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C). This is the most common source of erythorbic acid. When vitamin C is exposed to oxygen, it will convert into erythorbic acid. This process happens naturally when fruits and vegetables are stored for long periods of time. It also occurs when fruits and vegetables are heated during cooking or processing.

2. Plant Extracts: Some plants contain high levels of erythorbic acid naturally (for example, sugar beets). This substance may be extracted from these plant sources and used as an additive in other foods or beverages that require an extra boost of antioxidants.

What does erythorbic acid do to the body?


Erythorbic acid is a food additive that’s used as a preservative and antioxidant. It’s also called ERY and E300.

Erythorbic acid occurs naturally in fruits, vegetables and grains, but it’s also produced industrially from sucrose. It’s used to preserve foods such as cheese, chocolate and dried fruit.

It’s also added to some packaged products to prevent oxidation during processing or storage. Examples include instant soup mixes, potato chips, frozen vegetables and soft drinks.

Erythorbic acid is approved for use in the European Union (EU), Russia, Australia and New Zealand, but not in the United States (U.S.). It hasn’t been tested for safety by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

There’s no evidence that erythorbic acid poses any health risks when consumed at levels found in foods or beverages made with erythorbic acid or when used as a preservative in processed foods such as baked goods or canned goods sold in Europe or other countries that allow its use.

What is erythorbic acid used for?


Erythorbic acid (E-320), also known as Sodium Erythorbatate, is a food additive that is used to preserve foods and prevent browning. It is a salt of erythorbic acid, which is an antioxidant.

Erythorbic Acid Uses

Erythorbic acid may be prepared by the action of sulfur dioxide on erythrose, followed by oxidation.

The primary use of erythorbic acid is as an antioxidant in food products such as cheese, poultry, and baked goods. It is also used as an antioxidant in beer and wine production.

Is erythorbic acid bad for you?


Vitamin C is a potent antioxidant that helps neutralize free radicals in the body. It’s especially important to consume enough vitamin C when you’re pregnant or breastfeeding as it’s needed for healthy fetal and infant development.

Erythorbic acid is a synthetic version of vitamin C that has been added to many processed foods since the 1990s. While it’s considered safe by the FDA and other regulatory agencies, some research suggests erythorbic acid may have negative effects on health.

Erythorbic Acid Dangers

While erythorbic acid appears to be safe for most people when used at recommended doses and according to instructions on its label or package insert, it has caused side effects in some individuals.

Erythorbic acid may cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, dizziness, drowsiness or headache in some people who take it by mouth. It may also cause hives or itching in those who are sensitive to it.

This medication can be safely taken orally at home under the supervision of a physician.

Erythorbic acid VS Ascorbic acid


Ascorbic acid and erythorbic acid are both naturally occurring antioxidants found in plants. They are both vitamin C derivatives, but the chemical structures of the two compounds are different. Ascorbic acid is a water-soluble antioxidant that is an integral part of the human diet, while erythorbic acid is fat-soluble and does not occur naturally in food.

Ascorbic Acid

Ascorbic acid, also called vitamin C, is a water-soluble antioxidant that occurs naturally in many fruits and vegetables. It is essential for growth and development and helps prevent scurvy when consumed in sufficient amounts by humans or animals. Ascorbic acid cannot be produced by the body but must be obtained from food sources. It can also be synthesized by adding sugar to a solution containing yeast and oxygen, according to the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Erythorbic Acid

Erythorbic acid is another name for ethyl 4-hydroxybenzoate, a preservative commonly used in foods such as soft drinks, peanut butter and even baby formula milk. It prevents spoilage by inhibiting microorganisms that cause food spoilage or food poisoning, according to Science Direct

Where to buy erythorbic acid?


Erythorbic acid is a sugar acid that is commonly used as an antioxidant to help prevent foods from discoloring. It is typically used in combination with other antioxidants such as sodium sulfite and potassium iodate.

Because erythorbic acid is stable during cooking, it does not need to be added to the food until just before consumption. The FDA has approved erythorbic acid for use in foods including baked goods, fruit juices, jams and jellies, frozen concentrated orange juice, candy and chewing gum.

Erythorbic Acid Suppliers

You can find erythorbic acid online at a number of different retailers including Amazon, Vitacost and Swanson Health Products. You can also find it at some local health food stores or from bulk suppliers like Bulk Supplements or Swanson Health Products.

Frequently Asked Questions


Is erythorbic acid natural?


Erythorbic acid is a natural chemical that is used as a food preservative. It is an antioxidant and is commonly found in fruits and vegetables, such as carrots, apples and melons. Erythorbic acid is also found in beer, wine, soft drinks and other processed foods.

Is Erythorbic Acid Halal?


Erythorbic acid derived from sucrose undergoes fermentation process that makes it Halal. However, if it is derived from corn source then it remains questionable whether it can be consumed by Muslims or not because consumption of alcohol made from corn source is prohibited according to Islamic.

Is Erythorbic Acid Kosher?


Erythorbic acid is not kosher because it is a synthetic substance. Erythorbic acid is a natural preservative that is used in food processing to inhibit the growth of mold and other bacteria. It can be derived from edible plants or, more commonly, produced chemically.

Is Erythorbic Acid Gluten free?


No, Erythorbic Acid is not gluten free. It is made from cornstarch and can be contaminated by gluten during its manufacturing process.

Is Erythorbic Acid Vegan?


Erythorbic acid is not vegan because it comes from animal sources such as blood or bone marrow. It also contains gelatin, which is made from animal bones and skin.

Is Erythorbic Acid Dairy Free?


Yes, the erythorbic acid used in the making of this product is dairy free. It is not processed with any dairy products.

What is the Relationship with Ascorbic Acid?


Ascorbic acid is a form of vitamin C. It is also known as L-ascorbic acid and Vitamin C. Ascorbic acid is an essential nutrient that is required for growth and health. It can be found in most fresh fruits and vegetables, but it’s also made in the human body.

Vitamin C is needed by the body to make collagen, a protein that helps keep skin healthy, heal wounds and form scar tissue. Vitamin C also helps protect against damage to blood vessels caused by free radicals (unstable molecules that can cause damage to cells).

Vitamin C is needed for many other functions in the body as well, such as helping red blood cells carry oxygen throughout our bodies. Vitamin C also helps us absorb iron from foods we eat, so it’s important for women who are pregnant or breastfeeding because it promotes healthy iron levels in their babies’ developing bodies.

Difference Between Erythorbic Acid and Sodium Erythorbate


Erythorbic acid and sodium erythorbate are both antioxidant preservatives that can be used to prevent food from turning brown when exposed to air. They are both derived from vitamin C, which is why they are often referred to as “vitamin C derivatives.”

Erythorbic acid is naturally found in fruits and vegetables, while sodium erythorbate is made by fermenting glucose with yeast.

Sodium erythorbate has been found to be less effective than erythorbic acid at preventing oxidation, but it is also more stable during storage. This means that it may be better suited for long-term storage and transport of products containing high levels of fat or oil.



Erythorbic acid, E315 is a food additive that is used to control the level of polyunsaturated fatty acids in food. It has been approved for use in more than 60 countries and has been used for more than 25 years. Studies on rats have shown that erythorbic acid does not show any evidence of causing cancer upon ingestion. However, it has been identified as a possible cause of allergic reactions especially to those who suffer from asthma. On the other hand, studies have also found that this compound can be effective in boosting one’s immune system making it helpful in treating some diseases like HIV or AIDS.

Sophie Feng

Sophie Feng

Sophie Feng is the author of gradechemical.com, she is the co-founder of the grade chemical network. She has been in grade chemical company since 2017, with a working knowledge of food chemical .

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