Brilliant Black


INS No. 151
E 151
EINECS No. 219-746-5
CAS No. 2519-30-4
CI Food Black 1
CI No. 28440
Brilliant Black BN
Black PN

Physical Description

Brilliant black is a bis-azo dye that provides a blackish violet shade in applications.

Common Uses

Typical applications include beverages, confectionery, bakery, dairy fats and oil, meat, seafood, snacks, dry mixes and seasonings, fruit preparation, convenient food, and flavors.



EU Commission Regulation (EU) No 231/2012

Codex GSFA Provisions

The Codex Alimentarius Commission has finalized authorization of brilliant black (INS No. 151) for use in 4 food categories, including flavored fluid milk drinks, confectionery, decorations, toppings (non-fruit) and sweet sauces and chewing gum as noted in the General Standard of Food Additives. Many other applications of brilliant black as a color additive in foods and beverages have been proposed and are pending authorization, following completion of the review and comments process.

Regulatory Approval

JECFA: ADI of 0-1 mg/kg body weight (2019)

EU: ADI of 5 mg/kg bw/day (EFSA, 2010). Specific food categories and permitted maximum use levels have been defined in Directive 94/36/EC on colors for use in foodstuffs.

Safety Reviews

EFSA Panel on Food Additives and Nutrient Sources added to Food (ANS); Scientific Opinion on the re-evaluation of Brilliant Black BN (E 151) as a food additive on request from the European Commission. EFSA Journal 2010;8(4):1540. [30 pp.]. Available online

JECFA (WHO/FAO Joint Expert Committee on Food Additives), 1981. 25th report Toxicological evaluation of some food additives. WHO Food Additives Series, 16. Available online

Evaluation of certain food additives (Eighty-seventh report of the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives) WHO Technical Report Series, No. 1020, 2019. Available online.