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Annatto is a derivative of the seed of the achiote trees (Bixa orellana L.) of tropical regions of the Americas, used to produce a red food coloring. It is used in cheese, margarine, butter, rice and smoked fish. Annatto is commonly found in Latin America and Caribbean cuisines as both a coloring agent and for flavoring. Central and South American Indians used the seeds to make a body paint, and as a lipstick. For this reason, the achiote is sometimes called the lipstick-tree.


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