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Brief description of the composition of food-grade ink

Date:2024-05-08  From:Star Color   

Food-grade ink is a special type of ink designed for food packaging and food surface decoration. Its key characteristic is that it can be in direct contact with food without releasing or leaving behind harmful substances, thus ensuring the safety and hygiene of the food. Food-grade ink has a wide range of applications, and below we will analyze its main components and uses in detail.

Main Components

  1. Pigments:

    • Natural Pigments: These pigments originate from natural substances such as plants, minerals, or animals. Natural pigments like gardenia yellow and safflower yellow not only have natural colors but also possess certain nutritional value and medicinal benefits. They are favored due to their natural properties and safety.
    • Synthetic Pigments: In some cases, synthetic pigments are also used. These pigments are obtained through chemical synthesis and possess advantages such as bright colors and good stability. However, as synthetic pigments may have potential adverse effects on human health, their usage and quantity need to be strictly controlled to ensure compliance with food safety standards.
  2. Resins:
    Resins are an essential component of ink, determining its adhesion and drying properties. In food-grade ink, commonly used resins include polyamide, polyester, polyethylene, and polypropylene. These resins undergo rigorous screening and testing to ensure compliance with food safety standards.

  3. Additives:
    Additives play a crucial role in improving the performance of ink, such as enhancing viscosity, fluidity, and drying speed. Commonly used additives include leveling agents, antioxidants, and UV absorbers. These additives also need to meet food safety standards, and their usage and quantity need to be carefully controlled.

  4. Solvents:
    The solvents in food-grade ink are primarily edible substances such as propylene glycol, glycerol (glycerin), and purified water. These solvents are not only safe but also help regulate the viscosity and drying speed of the ink.

  5. Food Coloring:
    The coloring agents in food-grade ink are typically approved food colorings, such as erythrosine, carmine, tartrazine, and indigo carmine. The quantity of these colorings needs to be strictly controlled to ensure the safety of the ink.

  6. Other Ingredients:
    In addition to the main components mentioned above, food-grade ink may also contain other ingredients such as surfactants, defoamers, and self-crosslinking agents. These ingredients, though used in small quantities, also need to comply with food safety standards.

    food-grade ink


  1. Food Packaging:
    Food-grade ink is widely used on various food packaging materials, such as plastic bags, paper boxes, and metal cans. These inks are not only safe and non-toxic but also enhance the aesthetics and attractiveness of the packaging, helping food brands stand out in the market.

  2. Food Surface Decoration:
    Food-grade ink can be directly printed on the surface of foods, such as fruits, vegetables, cakes, and biscuits. Printing patterns, texts, or logos can increase the added value and attractiveness of the food, meeting consumer demands for appealing food appearances and creativity.

  3. Pharmaceutical Packaging and Labeling:
    In the pharmaceutical industry, food-grade ink also plays an important role. It can be used to print logos, instructions, and promotional information on tablets, capsules, and pharmaceutical inner packaging. This not only ensures product safety but also improves product recognizability.

Overall, the composition and uses of food-grade ink must strictly adhere to relevant food safety regulations and standards. During production and use, the safety and hygiene of the ink must be ensured to protect consumers' health and interests.