E401; Sodium Alginate(in 137 products)
1. Binder / Stabilizer - Retains the physical characteristics of food/cosmetics and ensure the mixture remains in an even state.
2. Emulsifier - Allows water and oils to remain mixed together to form an emulsion.
3. Gelling Agent / Thickener - Increases the viscosity by thickening the liquid to give it more texture
Sodium alginate is the sodium salt of alginic acid. It is extracted from brown seaweed. It is used as a stabiliser for ice cream, yogurt, cream, and cheese and acts as a thickener and emulsifier for salad, pudding, jam, tomato juice, and canned products. It has E number 401.
It is a hydration agent for noodles, bread, cool and frozen products. In the presence of calcium and acid mediums, it forms resilient gels. It is a cold gelling agent that needs no heat to gel. It is most commonly used with calcium lactate or calcium chloride in the spherification process.
It is approved to use as food additive in EU and generally recognized as safe food substance in US.
1. US FDA Food Additives Status List 
2. EU Approved Food Additive 
3. US FDA Generally Recognized As Safe (GRAS) Food Substances (21 CFR 184)