E Number Index for Sweeteners

Food additives that have been assessed are assigned E Numbers in the EU. 

These appear on labels and lists of ingredients. E Numbers have, in the minds of many consumers, become a dirty word. However many natural, and perfectly harmless, substances are designated their own numbers. It is useful as a clear method of identification.

It can be slightly confusing, though, to read only the e number on a list of ingredients, without a description of the substance. The listing below may help in this regard.

E Number Index for Sweeteners is as follows:

E420 Sorbitol - Sugar Alcohol

E421 Mannitol - Sugar Alcohol 

E422 Glycerol - Sugar Alcohol 

E950 Acesulfame K - Artificial Sweetener

E951 Aspartame - Artificial Sweetener 

E952 Cyclamate - Artificial Sweetener 

E953 Isomalt - Sugar Alcohol 

E954 Saccharin - Artificial Sweetener

E955 Sucralose - Artificial Sweetener

E956 Alitame - Artificial Sweetener

E957 Thaumatin - Natural Sweetener

E958 Glycyrrhizin - Natural Sweetener

E959 Neohesperidin DC - Artificial Sweetener

E960 Stevioside - Natural Sweetener 

E961 Neotame - Artificial Sweetener

E962 Aspartame-acesulfame Salt - Artificial Sweetener

E965 Maltitol - Sugar Alcohol

E966 Lactitol - Sugar Alcohol

E967 Xylitol - Sugar Alcohol 

E968 Erythritol - Sugar Alcohol 

E969 Advantame - Artificial Sweetener 

Twenty one sweeteners are currently assigned e numbers in the EU. Note that the list includes three natural sweeteners and ten artificial ones. 

There are eight sugar alcohols (Polyols) on the list. Stevioside (an extract from the Stevia plant) is given E number 960. It was first approved in France, and has now been approved as a food additive throughout the EU. Truvia and PureVia both contain Stevioside and are now for sale in most supermarkets.

Glycyrrhizin (E958), is a natural sweetener, yet it has some reported side effects. Saccharin (E954) an artificial sweetener, has none, and appears to be safer!

Advantame is the newest addition to the list. It is the sweetest substance yet created, being 20,000 times as sweet as sugar.

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