What Is Agar Agar E406?

Agar agar meaning: same as Agar, Agar agar E406 is a natural hydrocolloid extracted from red algae such as Gracilaria and Gelidiume from sea, used as gelling agent in food preparation. As one of the three most extensively applied algal hydrocolloids in the world, Agar agar is mostly used in the food, pharmaceutical, household chemical and bioengineering industry.


Agar agar does not require addition of other gelling agent or ions for gelation, and its strong gelling capacity allows Agar agar gels to be formed from with dilute solutions. The gels formed are firm and strong.

In food industry, agar-agar works as a gelling agent, thickener and stabilizer. It physically reacts with substance to form complexes and therefore is commonly used in beverage, jelly and puddings, ice-cream, chewy candy, canned food, meat product, fruit jam and dairy product. In Japan, Agar agar (Kanten) is clarified as dietary fiber and has more than 400 years of eating history.


Odourless or has a slight characteristic odour. Unground agar usually occurs in bundles consisting of thin, membranous, agglutinated strips, or in cut, flaked, granulated or powdered forms. It may be light yellowish orange, yellowish grey to pale yellow, or colourless. It is tough when damp, brittle when dry. Powdered agar is white to yellowish white or pale yellow.


Agar agar E406 Insoluble in cold water; soluble in boiling water

Other names for Agar agar

Agar thickening agent, agar agar seaweed, agar agar thickener, agar food additive

E number: E406

Agar agar structure

Chemical composition of Agar agar: two polysaccharides: agarose and agaropectin. Agar agar consists of a mixture of two polysaccharides: agarose and agaropectin, with agarose making up about 70% of the mixture.

Agarose, is a strongly gelling and the component in agar agar that forms a gel, non-ionic polysaccharide which is regarded as consisting of 1,3- linked β-D-galactopyranose and 1,4-linked 3,6-anhydro-α-L-galattopyranose units.

Agaropectin, Non-gel fractions, which are complex polysaccharides with sulfates, glucuronic acid and pyruvate aldehydes attached to it, that strongly influence solution properties, gelling kinetics and gel features.

Agar agar calories

26 calories per 100mg

Agar is obtained from?

Most agar agar is extracted from red algae species, especially from Gelidium and Gracilaria

Agar agar chemical formula

C14H24O9, for repeat unit

Gelatin substitute

Agar agar is a vegetarian substitute for Gelatin since it is a polysaccharide made from algae