• Mmm! Taste the malaria treatment!
  • Apparently, this is neither a coloring or flavoring agent. Hmm.

Irn Bru ingredients

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As much as I liked Irn Bru, I probably didn't need to read the fine print on the bottle. Ammonium ferric citrate? Quinine?! "This product may stain"?!?! Yeesh. While unsubstantiated, I get the impression that ammonium ferric citrate is responsible for the name Irn Bru. Maybe the inventor got a really good deal on several metric tons of the stuff and figured, "Hey, I'll make a soda!"

  1. Delay Tactics 84 months ago | reply

    What no girders?

  2. noodlepie 83 months ago | reply

    Hi, I'm an admin for a group called Irn Bru Appreciation Society, and we'd love to have your photo added to the group.

  3. domu888 81 months ago | reply

    So just because it has an industrial-sounding name means that its horrendous? Given that Ammonium ferric citrate makes up 0.002% of the total, its hardly going to kill you. Also don't forget that the "ferric" part means it contains Iron, as in the essential mineral that most people supplement their diet with. The "citrate" part shows that its related to citric acid or Vitamin C. As to quinine, its an essential ingredient in most Tonic waters and usually derived from a type of tree bark. The only ingredients I would worry about are the two colouring agents, E100 and E124: they have those anonymous-looking code numbers for a reason.

  4. tstadler 81 months ago | reply

    Domu888, your argument is kind of weak. What if it contained 0.002% mercury or lead? Would such a teensy amount mean you'd cheerfully drink it? Also, teasing apart chemicals and analyzing their constituent parts to determine how the whole will work probably won't work. Consider hydrogen, carbon, and nitrogen -- three of the most common elements in our air, and present in practically everything we eat! But put them together, and you have hydrogen cyanide, which is, you know, kind of deadly. Besides, you ignored ammonia, which isn't as nice as the other two bits.

    Regardless, my point wasn't that Irn Bru is terrible -- I still drank several bottles of the stuff after I read the label. But I do prefer products whose ingredients are products I can identify. Consider the list for Fritos: corn, corn oil, and salt. I appreciate that.

    As for the E numbers, they're standardized codes for food additives used in the European Union, and as such, not necessarily anything to worry about -- many such additives are derived quite naturally. In this case, E110 is what we in the US call FD&C Yellow 6. E124 -- known as Ponceau 4R or Cochineal Red A -- is more worrisome, as it is banned in the US.

  5. spritle101 36 months ago | reply

    Quinine is what Tonic water is made out of.

    Ammonium ferric citrate is a food additive used as an acidity regulator.

    Still, it's amusing that a soda would fight off Malaria & relax your muscles.

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