Is Calcium Chloride Ok To Eat


Is Calcium chloride Safe to Eat?

Yes, it almost has no side effects and the safety has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), as well as the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA).


Calcium chloride is generally recognized as safe (GRAS) that can be used as a firming agent, nutrient supplement, pH control agent, anticaking agent, humectant and others in the following food categories and with the maximum usage:(7):

  • Baked goods, dairy product analogs 0.3%
  • Beverage 0.22%
  • Cheese, processed fruit and fruit juices 0.2%
  • Coffee and tea 0.32%
  • Condiments and relishes 0.4%
  • Gravies and sauces 0.2%
  • Jams and jellies 0.1%
  • Meat products 0.25%
  • Plant protein products 2.0%
  • Processed vegetables and vegetable juices 0.4%
  • Other food categories 0.05%


Calcium chloride (E509) is listed in Commission Regulation () No 231/2012 as an authorised food additive and categorized in “ additives other than colours and sweeteners” 

Safety re-evaluation in 2019

EFSA concluded no safety concern when calcium chloride (together with hydrochloric acid (E507), potassium chloride (E 508) and magnesium chloride (E 511)) used as a food additive after the studies on genotoxicity, carcinogenicity and other researches.

Approved uses

Its application is listed in “Group I” with the maximum level “quantum satis”. Meanwhile, its separate use levels are also “not limited” in the following products are also

  • Dehydrated milk
  • Ripened cheese
  • Canned or bottled fruit and vegetables
  • Fruit compote other than apple
  • Jam, jellies and marmalades

UK Food Standards Agency

Categorized in “Others”

Food Standards Australia New Zealand

It is an approved ingredient in Australia and New Zealand with the code number 509.


Function Class: food additives, firming agent.

Acceptable daily intake: ADI “not specific” set in 1973.

Is CaCl2 Vegan?

Yes, it is vegan as a naturally occurring mineral and the manufacturing process without the use of animal matter or products derived from animal origin. So it is suitable added to the diet of vegetarians.

Is CaCl2 acid or base?

It’s neither acid or base, it is a salt.

Is CaCl2 polar?

Yes, it is polar. It is an ionic molecule which dissociates to calcium ion and chloride ion in water.

Calcium chloride vs calcium lactate vs calcium gluconate?

Calcium chloride, calcium lactate, calcium lactate gluconate are three commonly calcium salts used in spherification. They all contribute to calcium ions and the main difference is calcium chloride has the highest level of calcium, but it has a bitter taste while the other two don’t have a flavor.

Is CaCl2 natural?

Yes, it is natural if made from the brine process, otherwise it is synthetic.

Is CaCl2 gluten free?

Yes, it is gluten free or without gluten as it does not contain wheat, rye, barley, or crossbreeds of these grains, therefore can be used for people with celiac disease.

Is CaCl2 dairy free?

Yes, it is dairy free as calcium is derived from limestone instead of milk.

Is Calcium Chloride Ok To EatWhat’re the Uses of Calcium chloride?


Generally, food grade calcium chloride is mainly used as a firming agent, anti-caking agent, pickling agent, preservative, stabilizer, texturizer, moisture absorber, and low sodium salt in food processing. Its main applications are in bottled water, cheese making, beer brewing, gel with sodium alginate, canned fruits & vegetables and so on.

Bottled water

Bottled water companies add calcium chloride and other minerals & salts (e.g. magnesium chloride or sulfate, sodium or potassium bicarbonate) in bottled drinking water mainly for the following two purposes:

  • Impart a taste of clean, sweet and salty to purified water which tastes flat after distilled.
  • Balance electrolytes in your body after sweat or urinate and therefore avoid overhydrate
  • Cheese

    Calcium chloride is often added to milk for cheese making. It increases rennet activity, accelerates coagulation and increases curd firmness by slightly raising milk acidity and reacting with protein to hold together.


    Calcium chloride or sulfate is commonly used in beer brewing. The function of calcium ions as follows:

    • Reduce the pH
    • Preserve mash enzymes
    • Avoid mineral deficiencies and improve the hardness of beer water
    • Remove phosphate and oxalate
    • Promote yeast growth and flocculation
    • Bind with the cell wall proteins after absorbed by the growing yeast cells
    • Chlorine ions can promote the activity of alpha-amylase, improve the activity of yeast, make the beer taste soft, increase the malt flavor, clarify the beer, and stabilize the colloid.


      Calcium chloride can be used to replace sodium chloride in pickling brine. It adds a salty taste to pickles without increasing sodium intake, helps the cucumbers look nice and maintain firmness, and also speeds up fermentation during the pickling process. Meanwhile, it is environment friendly (2).


      With the function of strong water absorption rate, anhydrous calcium chloride is an efficient dehumidifier which absorbs moisture from the surrounding environment and thus reduces the humidity in the sealed packaging, and therefore protects food from moisture during storage.

    • Fresh vegetables

      Preserving the freshness of fruits and vegetables by sprayed or dipped in calcium chloride solution after harvesting is an effective method, which

      • Slows physiological disorders
      • Reduces the respiratory strength
      • Maintains firmness by reacting with the pectin
      • Delays the loss of Vitamin C
      • Enhance nutritional calcium level
      • Used together with calcium propionate and calcium ascorbate to the surface of apples and lemons as an antibrowning agent
      • Reduces decay

      And therefore extend the shelf life of fresh fruits and vegetables.

      Low sodium food

      CaCl2 is similar to table salt, but it contains calcium instead of sodium. It can be used in food where low sodium is desired.


      Other food uses

    • As a coagulant in tofu making.
    • gel or spherification with sodium alginate.
    • For meat tenderization.
    • Improve protein stability and kneading resistance in wheat flour and as a calcium fortification.
    • Calcium supplement in dairy products.
    • As a refrigerant for ice cream and frozen dessert products manufacturing.
    • Preserve color and texture, retain firmness in canned fruit and vegetables, e.g. processed tomatoes.
    • Reduce the formation of acrylamide in the production of potato chips and sticks in high-temperature cooking  which caused cancer in animals at very high doses.

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