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Cassia gum is a food additive made from the endosperm of Senna obtusifolia (also called Cassia obtusifolia or Cassia tora). It is used as a thickener and gelling agent, and has E-number E427 or E499 in pet foods. 
Cassia gum is currently (mid-2009) being used mainly in pet food applications. In the EU, cassia tora gum is approved as E-427. It is approved in Japan, China and Australasia. In Russia (and perhaps other Eastern Bloc countries), cassia may be used upon special permission (registration) with the authorities by the end-user.
Approval has already been obtained in France, Belgium and Austria for human food applications. Full EU approval is expected by the end of 2009.
In June 2008, specialty firm Lubrizol Advanced Material filed a petition to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) proposing that food regulations be amended to provide for the use of cassia gum as a stabilizer in frozen dairy desserts. Approval in the US is still pending, with no clear indication of when it may be obtained.
A chemically-modified grade is used in personal care products.
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