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Mono- and diglycerides

Mono- and diglycerides

What are mono- and diglycerides?

Mono- and diglycerides, often referred to by their food additive codes E471 and E472c (for mono- and diglycerides of fatty acids) and E472e (for diacetyl tartaric acid esters of mono- and diglycerides), are common food additives used in a wide range of processed foods.

These mono- and diglycerides serve various functions in the food industry, including emulsification, improving texture, and extending shelf life. Mono- and diglycerides are composed of glycerol and one or two fatty acid molecules, respectively. These substances are versatile in their applications, helping to create stable mixtures of ingredients that would otherwise separate.

Additionally, citrem (E472e) is a citric acid ester of mono- and diglycerides, while datem (E472c) stands for diacetyl tartaric acid esters of mono- and diglycerides. Each of these additives has its specific characteristics and applications in food production.

Their CAS numbers are as follows:

E471 (Mono- and Diglycerides) - CAS 31566-31-1,

E472c (Diacetyl Tartaric Acid Esters of Mono- and Diglycerides) - CAS 25383-99-7

E472e (Citric Acid Esters of Mono- and Diglycerides) - CAS 91052-83-4

Mono- and diglycerides can be derived from both animal and plant sources, so whether they are vegan or not depends on their origin.

Plant-Based Mono- and Diglycerides: If mono- and diglycerides are sourced from plants, such as soybean oil or palm oil, they are typically considered vegan. Many food manufacturers use plant-based sources to produce these emulsifiers, and they are widely used in vegan food products.

Animal-Based Mono- and Diglycerides: Some mono- and diglycerides can be derived from animal fats, such as pork or beef. These animal-derived mono- and diglycerides would not be considered vegan.


Mono- and diglycerides are used in the food industry, for chocolate products, cream products, bread, sweets, baked goods, sausages, jams, marmalades, and jellies.

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