Collective term (Latin: dye) for numerous, fine-grained dyes in cells of human, animal and plant tissues that absorb light in the visible spectral range. They belong to the large group of phenols. In addition to colouring, which among other things serves to protect against UV light, pigments also have important metabolic-physiological functions. This is, for example, the chlorophyll in photosynthesis. Pigments are also contained in the grapes and then in the wine made from them in the form of the carotenoids and flavonoids. When a wine is bottle-aged, larger particles develop through polymerisation (caking together) of pigments and other substances, which are then precipitated as a deposit (sediment). See also under anthocyanins (water-soluble plant pigments).
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