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E623 : Calcium glutamate

Calcium salt from glutamic acid (E620), a natural amino acid (building block of protein). Commercially prepared from molasses by bacterial fermentation. Also prepared from vegetable protein, such as gluten, or soy protein. Glutamic acid and glutamates are present in all proteins. Free glutamates are present in high concentrations in ripened cheese, breast milk, tomatoes and sardines.

Function & Characteristics:
Flavour enhancer. Glutamic acid and glutamates have the specific umami taste and enhance many other flavours, thereby reducing the amounts of salt needed in a product. Calcium glutamate is mainly used in low salt (low sodium) products.

Many different products.

Acceptable daily intake (ADI):
None determined. Glutamates may not be used in products intended for children under 12 weeks.

Side effects:
Although many side effects have been reported for glutamates, these have not been scientifically proven. See also here and here.

Dietary restrictions:
None. Glutamic acid and glutamates can be used by all religious groups, vegetarians and vegans. The products do not contain gluten.


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