What is azodicarbonamide E927a in food? Uses, Safety, Side effects

What is azodicarbonamide E927a in food? Uses, Safety, Side effects

What is azodicarbonamide

Table of Contents

Azodicarbonamide E927a is a common food additive and preservative used as a blowing agent. It’s used in commercial baked goods to increase volume, improve texture and enhance freshness. This article provides facts about azodicarbonamide E927a, benefits and risks of this food additive, list of foods containing azodicarbonamide E927a, what are the alternatives to azodicarbonamide E927a and health precautions

What is azodicarbonamide in food?

The chemical azodicarbonamide is used as a dough conditioner in food products and as an additive in plastics to improve elasticity. It’s also used by bakers to make bread and pastries more flexible.

Azodicarbonamide is found in a wide range of foods, including bread, bagels and tortillas, pasta, noodles, and pizza crusts. It’s also used to make foam plastics like gym mats, shoe soles, and yoga mats.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved azodicarbonamide as a food additive for use in certain flours and starches — but not whole wheat flour or corn meal — at levels up to 45 parts per million (0.0045 percent). The FDA requires manufacturers to list ingredients on their packaging, so if you see it listed on the label of your food product, you can assume that it contains the chemical.

The European Union banned azodicarbonamide for use in food products over concerns about its safety for workers in manufacturing plants where the chemical is used.

What is azodicarbonamide used for?

Azodicarbonamide is a chemical used in the production of foamed plastics such as bread dough. It has also been used to make other synthetic rubbers and plastics, including shoe soles and yoga mats. The following is a list of uses for azodicarbonamide:

Food additive – An additive to flour, bread, and other foods. It is used as an oxidizing agent to bleach flour and improve its baking properties. This is done by reacting with the gluten protein in the flour to form cross-links that strengthen the dough. It has been used in France since 1959 and has been approved for use in Canada, the United States, Australia, and New Zealand

Treatment for hyperinsulinism – A rare disease that occurs when there is too much insulin in your blood. Hyperinsulinism can cause serious problems during pregnancy or birth if not treated soon enough.

Dough conditioner – A substance added to dough (for example bread) during preparation to make it easier to handle and improve its appearance, texture, and handling characteristics.

How is azodicarbonamide made?

Azodicarbonamide is made by reacting adipic acid with azobisisobutyronitrile (AIBN). The reaction requires an additional step to remove excess AIBN:

Adipic acid + AIBN → 1,3-diazabicyclo[2.2.2]octane + water

The diazo intermediate can be hydrolyzed to give the desired product:

1,3-diazabicyclo[2.2.2]octane + HCl → azodicarbonamide + water


Appearance Powder that is yellow to orange-red in color and odorless
Other names Azodicarboxamide, Azobisformamide
CAS number 123-77-3
Chemical formula C2H4O2N4
Molecular weight 116.08
Solubility This compound is insoluble in water and most organic solvents, but is easily soluble in dimethyl sulfoxide and N,N-dimethylformamide.

Azodicarbonamide structure


What’s the application of azodicarbonamide?

Azodicarbonamide is a chemical compound with the formula N HO. It is a white, odorless, and hygroscopic solid that dissolves in water. A derivative of ethylene, it exists as two geometric isomers: cis-1,2-bis(diazo-2′,4′-dicarboximide) and trans-1,2-bis(diazo-2′,4′-dicarboximide). Its most common use is as a blowing agent in the production of foamed plastics, but it may also be used as an additive to increase the stability of flour. It has also been used in some countries as a bleaching agent in flour processing.

Azodicarbonamide is used as an additive to increase the stability of flour. The addition of azodicarbonamide improves dough mixing tolerance, increases dough strength and extensibility, and reduces gluten strength.

Azodicarbonamide is also used as a blowing agent for foaming agents in plastics production.

Potassium bromate substitute

Potassium bromate was one of the most commonly used dough conditioners in the past. Due to its toxicity and cancer-causing dangers, it has been banned in most countries but remains approved by the FDA.

The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) classifies it as “Group 2B” which means “possibly carcinogenic to humans”.

Since 1962, Azodicarbonamide has been used safely to replace potassium bromate as a flour maturing agent in bakeries.

Azodicarbonamide is an ideal replacement for potassium bromate in flour treatment and baked goods due to its rapid oxidation at low levels.

Whitening agent

When azodicarbonamide is added to flour, pigments (such as carotene, lutein, and other plant pigments) can be oxidized, thereby making the flour white.

How does ADA work?

The azodicarbonamide itself doesn’t work with flour, but when mixed with flour and water to form a dough, it releases active oxygen and oxidizes amino acid sulfhydryl groups into disulfide bonds. Consequently, it improves dough elasticity, toughness, and uniformity.

When noodles are made with azodicarbonamide, they are smooth, soft, white and resistant to boiling. The dough conditioner must be efficient and low-cost when working with flour containing low protein and gluten content.

Blowing agent

As a blowing agent, azodicarbonamide can also be used in the production of rubber and plastics, such as polyvinyl chloride, polyethylene, polypropylene, and polystyrene.

Rubber soles, artificial leather, and yoga mats can be manufactured from Azodicarbonamide because it decomposes into carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, nitrogen, and ammonia which are trapped in tiny bubbles trapped in the polymer during the production process of the above industrial uses. As a result, the product becomes more elastic and stronger and foamed.

Is azodicarbonamide safe?

FDA and JECFA approve ADA, but EFSA, Food Standards Australia New Zealand, and some other agencies do not allow it.

The International Agency for Research on Cancer lists semicarbazide as “not classifiable as a carcinogen to humans,” although some people are afraid of it because it is considered a “yoga mat chemical.”

Food Babe (a food blog) first alerted the public to the use of azodicarbonamide in bread, because it is also used in shoe rubbers and yoga mats, and may be associated with respiratory issues, allergies, and asthma.

Many fast food companies use azodicarbonamide in their bread, including Subway, McDonald’s, Starbucks, etc.

In order to ensure the safety of their bread products, Subway removed it from their bread soon. McDonald’s bread still contains ADA.


The maximum level of azodicarbonamide that can be safely used as an aging and bleaching agent in cereal flour and as a dough conditioner in bread baking is 0.0045%.


Azodicarbonamide is not allowed as a food additive in Europe, but was previously allowed with the number E927a. Semicarbazide has also been banned as a blowing agent in food contact materials since August 2005 due to its carcinogenicity and genotoxicity.


Function Class: Flour treatment agents, food additives.

Usage: “0 to 45 mg/kg for flour treatment” set in 1965.

What does azodicarbonamide do to your body?

Azodicarbonamide can be used in a variety of food products, including bread and pastries, as well as other goods like yoga mats or shoe soles.

Azodicarbonamide has been linked to asthma, but it is not a proven cause of asthma. However, there are some studies that suggest that azodicarbonamide may have an effect on the respiratory system.

One study found that those who worked in a bakery where azodicarbonamide was used had an increased risk of developing asthma symptoms compared to those who did not work in bakeries with azodicarbonamide.

Another study found that workers exposed to azodicarbonamide were more likely to develop wheezing and shortness of breath than those who were not exposed to the chemical.

Why is azodicarbonamide banned in Europe?

The European Union (EU) has banned food manufacturers from using the chemical azodicarbonamide in their products. This is because azodicarbonamide is a component of the plastic foaming agent, used to give bread its airy texture.

The EU’s Food Safety Authority said that it was unsafe to use the chemical in food products because of its potential to cause asthma and allergies. It also noted that there were no adequate safety measures in place to protect consumers from exposure to azodicarbonamide during the manufacturing process.

It is not clear why azodicarbonamide causes these health problems, but there have been cases where people exposed to the chemical have experienced breathing difficulties and skin rashes.

What are the side effects of azodicarbonamide?

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has found that azodicarbonamide is safe for use in food. However, it can cause some side effects when eaten in large amounts.

Some of these common side effects include:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Stomach cramps
  • Other rare side effects include:
  • Skin rashes and itching
  • Loss of appetite or weight loss

Where to buy azodicarbonamide?

Azodicarbonamide is a food additive that is used as a bleaching agent in bread and other bakery products. It also has a variety of industrial applications, including strengthening rubber and plastics.

In the United States, azodicarbonamide can be purchased from several online vendors including Amazon and eBay. The chemical is not approved for use in Canada or Europe. The compound can be purchased in bulk through online retailers like Amazon, eBay and Alibaba. Companies that sell azodicarbonamide are required by law to report any shipments over 2 kilograms via United States Postal Service (USPS) or Federal Express (FedEx).

Frequently Asked Questions

Is azodicarbonamide natural?

NO, Azodicarbonamide is a synthetic chemical that is used as a foaming agent in food products. It is also known as azobisformamide or ADA.

Is azodicarbonamide toxic?

The short answer is yes. Azodicarbonamide is toxic, but not to humans. It is a chemical used to make plastic foams and rubbers.

Is azodicarbonamide vegan?

Yes, azodicarbonamide is vegan. Azodicarbonamide is used in the production of plastics and polymers. It can also be used in cosmetics to increase the elasticity of hair and skin. It’s found in many of the products we use daily—like shoes, yoga mats, and even some processed foods.

What foods contain azodicarbonamide?

Many foods contain azodicarbonamide. It’s used as a chemical stabilizer in the production of many different kinds of foods, including bread, pizza dough, and hamburger buns. It can also be found in many types of packaged foods like pastries and cookies.

It’s important to note that some countries have banned the use of azodicarbonamide in food products due to health concerns.

How dangerous is azodicarbonamide?

The chemical is also used in plastics and rubbers, but it’s banned from used in food products in Europe. The FDA has not banned its use as a food additive in the US, but it does require labels to list it on packages of bread and other foods containing azodicarbonamide.

Some studies have shown that azodicarbonamide can cause asthma and other respiratory problems, but there’s not enough evidence to prove that it causes cancer or other long-term health issues.


Azodicarbonamide E927a the chemical compound has been used. This article is meant to give information, not to scare you away from eating certain foods. We remind you that each of us reacts in a different way to certain foods, and if there are doubts about one’s health should consult a doctor.

If you have any questions about this additive, feel free to let us know in the below comments.

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 .

Recent Post:

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


One professional food chemical manufacturing company in China, we can supply different types of food additives, flavors fragrances, feed additives, food ingredients, and custom chemicals, etc

Fill out the form and our sales team will contact you with our best prices.

Scroll to Top

Ask for Quick Quote

We will contact you within 1 working day, please pay attention to the email.