What is Acesulfame-potassium


Acesulfame-potassium is an artificial calorie-free sweetener.  It is sometimes referred to as Acesulfame-K or more simply as Ace-K.


It was discovered in 1967 by a chemist named Karl Clauss, and is marketed under the trade names of “Sweet One” and “Sunett”. It is roughly 200 times sweeter than common sugar but it has a notable bitter after taste. To mask the after taste, it is often combined with other artificial sweeteners such as aspartame and sucralose. Other chemicals are also used to mask the bitterness. Kraft Foods has patented the use of sodium ferulate for this purpose.

Side Effects / Adverse Reactions:

Like other artificial sweeteners, there is some doubt about the safety of Acesulfame-potassium. However, until more studies are published, there is no proof.

Acesulfame K has been approved for use in foods in Europe since 1983, in the United States since 1988, and in Canada since 1994.

However, the studies that purport to show safety have been challenged by the Center for Science in the Public Interest. They claim that the existing studies were flawed (despite being peer-reviewed), and that as a result the carcinogenicity of acesulfame K may not be properly understood.

Common Foods:

The following common foods and snacks list Acesulfame-potassium as an ingredient.

When used to sweeten diet sodas it is almost always used with another sweetener, such as aspartame or sucralose.

E Number:

The E number is 950.

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