In this activity, students use a simple paper chromatography method to separate and identify the components present in commercially available food colouring.

By the end of this activity, students should be able to:

  • successfully use paper chromatography as a method of separation
  • identify some of the typically used food colouring agents
  • describe in simple terms the food additive numbering system
  • research the reported effects colour additives have on children’s behaviour.

Download the Word file (see link below) for:

  • introduction/background notes
  • what you need
  • what to do
  • ideas to extend your students.
    Published 18 March 2011