Sunset Yellow FCF is a synthetic yellow azo dye derived from petroleum.

Health considerations

Animal studies where extremely high doses of Sunset Yellow FCF was given daily for three months show some incidence of diarrhea and enlargement of portions of the intestinal tract and testes. Lab-based studies found Sunset Yellow inhibited the action of cholinesterase enzymes, which are essential to neural transmission. A study of 56 patients with a history of chronic rash and edema found that Sunset Yellow provoked these reactions in 10 patients. This dye contains benzidene, a human and animal carcinogen.

Keep in mind

Sunset Yellow FCF has been voluntarily removed from foods in the UK.

May be found in

Cheeses, confections, jams, marmalades, candied fruit, yogurt, baked goods, soft drinks, lemon gelatin, cheese sauces, instant noodles, cake decorations and icings


Food and Cosmetics Toxicology
BBC News
Toxicological Aspects of Food Safety
British Journal of Biomedical Science
Environmental Health Perspectives

Alternative Spellings and Names

Orange yellow S, FD&C Yellow No. 6, Yellow No. 6, E104

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