What is trimagnesium dicitrate?

Tri­mag­ne­sium dic­i­trate, anhy­drous, is a chem­i­cal com­pound that has long been used for the mag­ne­sium for­ti­fi­ca­tion of food sup­ple­ments and foods. It is also known as tri-mag­ne­sium cit­rate, mag­ne­sium cit­rate, ter­tiary mag­ne­sium cit­rate, trib­a­sic mag­ne­sium cit­rate or neu­tral mag­ne­sium citrate.

The mol­e­c­u­lar for­mu­la is C12H10Mg3O14 and the mol­e­c­u­lar weight is 451.11 g/mol. Tri­mag­ne­sium dic­i­trate is a white pow­der that is sol­u­ble in water and has a pH val­ue of around 7. Tri­mag­ne­sium dic­i­trate, anhy­drous con­tains about 15 % magnesium.

From Feb­ru­ary 2024, tri­mag­ne­sium dic­i­trate can also be used as a food addi­tive with the E num­ber “E 345 (i)” in food sup­ple­ments in sol­id or chew­able form to bind small­er amounts of resid­ual water.

Name: Tri­mag­ne­sium dic­i­trate, anhy­drous; ter­tiary mag­ne­sium cit­rate; Tri-Mag­ne­sium citrate

Chem­i­cal for­mu­la: C12H10Mg3O14

Molar mass: 451.11 g/mol.

Mag­ne­sium con­cen­tra­tion: approx. 15 %

E num­ber: E 345 (i)

Why was an approval requested for trimagnesium dicitrate, anhydrous, as a food additive?

Food addi­tives are sub­stances that are delib­er­ate­ly added to foods in order to achieve cer­tain tech­no­log­i­cal or sen­so­ry prop­er­ties, e.g. preser­va­tion, col­or­ing, acid­i­ty reg­u­la­tion, sta­bi­liza­tion or texture.

The appli­ca­tion for and autho­riza­tion of tri­mag­ne­sium dic­i­trate, anhy­drous as a food addi­tive (also known as an E‑number) opens up new pos­si­bil­i­ties for the use of this min­er­al raw mate­r­i­al with­in the Euro­pean food sup­ple­ment indus­try. On this basis, the free move­ment of sup­ple­ments with­in the Euro­pean Union will be facilitated.

The safe­ty of food addi­tives is test­ed, eval­u­at­ed and thus ensured by the EFSA (Euro­pean Food Safe­ty Author­i­ty), among others.

From a con­sumer per­spec­tive, the advan­tage is that the use of tri­mag­ne­sium dic­i­trate, anhy­drous, in food sup­ple­ments is now reg­u­lat­ed. This means that label­ing require­ments, max­i­mum quan­ti­ties and spe­cial raw mate­r­i­al prop­er­ties relat­ing to tri­mag­ne­sium dic­i­trate, anhy­drous must be com­plied with by manufacturers.

Which EU regulation defines the authorization of food additives?

The autho­riza­tion of food addi­tives in the Euro­pean Union (EU) is gov­erned by reg­u­la­tion (EC) No. 1333/2008 on food addi­tives. This reg­u­la­tion lays down the con­di­tions for the use of food addi­tives in the EU and har­mo­nizes the pro­vi­sions in the Mem­ber States. The cor­re­spond­ing spec­i­fi­ca­tion para­me­ters are list­ed in the asso­ci­at­ed Reg­u­la­tion (EU) No. 231/2012.

What are the implications of its registration as a food additive?

When request­ing a raw mate­r­i­al as a food addi­tive, the appli­cant also makes a spec­i­fi­ca­tion pro­pos­al in which the chem­i­cal and, in some cas­es, phys­i­cal prop­er­ties of the raw mate­r­i­al are list­ed. If an autho­riza­tion is grant­ed on the basis of these prod­uct spec­i­fi­ca­tions, all prod­ucts on the mar­ket must meet these cri­te­ria in future if they are to be used for the areas of appli­ca­tion applied for.

In addi­tion to its use as a food addi­tive, tri­mag­ne­sium dic­i­trate, anhy­drous, may also con­tin­ue to be used for mag­ne­sium for­ti­fi­ca­tion of nutri­tion­al sup­ple­ments and foods. The for­ti­fi­ca­tion reg­u­la­tions direc­tive 2002/46/EC for nutri­tion­al sup­ple­ments and reg­u­la­tion (EC) 1925/2008 for foods spec­i­fy which puri­ty cri­te­ria the min­er­als used must meet.

Pri­or to the autho­riza­tion of tri­mag­ne­sium dic­i­trate, anhy­drous, as food addi­tive, qual­i­ties with puri­ty cri­te­ria rec­om­mend­ed by inter­na­tion­al boards could be used. But as a result of the approval, only tri­mag­ne­sium dic­i­trates, anhy­drous, that meet the cri­te­ria below may be used in food sup­ple­ments. This means that the food addi­tive-qual­i­ty for tri­mag­ne­sium dic­i­trate, anhy­drous, is manda­to­ry for for­ti­fi­ca­tion from now on.

Oth­er forms of mag­ne­sium cit­rate, such as tri-mag­ne­sium cit­rate 9‑hydrate or mono-mag­ne­sium cit­rate, are not affected.

Specification parameters of trimagnesium dicitrate, anhydrous E 345 (i)

E num­berE 345 (i) Tri­mag­ne­sium Dicitrate
Syn­onymsMag­ne­sium cit­rate; Tri-Mag­ne­sium Citrate
Chem­i­cal nameTri­mag­ne­sium bis (2‑hydroxypropane‑1,2,3‑tricarboxylate), anhydrous
Chem­i­cal formula(C6H5O7)2Mg3
Mol­e­c­u­lar weight451.12 (anhy­drous)
Assay15.0–16.5 % Mg on dry substances/matter equals 92.8–102.1 % tri­mag­ne­sium dic­i­trate, anhydrous 
Descrip­tionWhite or almost white, fine, slight­ly hygro­scop­ic powder
Appear­ance of a solutionNo more opales­cent than ref. susp. III and no more intense­ly col­ored than ref. sol. Y7 or BY6
Test for CitratePos­i­tive
Test for MagnesiumPos­i­tive
pH val­ue (5% solution)6.0–8.5
Sol­u­bil­i­tySol­u­ble in water, prac­ti­cal­ly insol­u­ble in ethanol (96 %), it dis­solves in dilute hydrochlo­ric acid.
Par­ti­cle sizeBy STEM method — medi­an (D50) par­ti­cle size (num­ber-based) not below 130 nm; By laser dif­frac­tion method — medi­an (D50) par­ti­cle size (mass-based) not below 50 μm

Trimagnesium Dicitrate from MAGNESIA as E 345 (i)

As a dis­trib­u­tor of min­er­al raw mate­ri­als, we can offer you a tri­mag­ne­sium dic­i­trate that meets the cri­te­ria for food addi­tive E 345 (i). You can there­fore ensure mag­ne­sium for­ti­fi­ca­tion for your food sup­ple­ments and foods in accor­dance with cur­rent regulations.

Tri­mag­ne­sium dicitrate

Suit­abil­i­ty as food addi­tive E 345 (i)

For use in food and food supplements

From 20 kg

Read­i­ly available

Download product specifications

Tri­mag­ne­sium Dicitrate

Spec­i­fi­ca­tion for arti­cle no. 6416450

Spec­i­fi­ca­tion for arti­cle no. 6416451

Contact us now

Chris­t­ian Nega and the NEM team sup­ports you with tech­ni­cal know-how and finds tai­lor-made solu­tions for your prod­uct idea. 

Also ask for detailed infor­ma­tion about spec­i­fi­ca­tionssafe­ty data sheets or mate­r­i­al sam­ples.