Meaning of additive

ad•di•tive

Pronunciation: (ad'i-tiv), [key]
— n.
  1. something that is added, as one substance to another, to alter or improve the general quality or to counteract undesirable properties: an additive that thins paint.
    1. Also calledfood additive.a substance added directly to food during processing, as for preservation, coloring, or stabilization.
    2. something that becomes part of food or affects it as a result of packaging or processing, as debris or radiation.
—adj.
  1. characterized or produced by addition; cumulative: an additive process.
  2. (of a function) having the property that the function of the union or sum of two quantities is equal to the sum of the functional values of each quantity; linear.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.
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