Sodium Benzoate 100g

R39.00

Sodium Benzoate is the inactive salt of benzoic acid.

Sodium benzoate is an anti-fungal agent and is often used as a natural preservative in combination with potassium sorbate. It is effective against fungi and slightly effective against bacteria, but not against mold and yeast, hence it is best when combined with potassium sorbate.

Usage: 0.5-3% dissolved in water.

Sodium benzoate can be used on its own but is often combined with potassium sorbate at 0.1-0.3%. Potassium sorbate is effective against molds and yeasts so together with sodium benzoate which is effective against fungi and slightly effective against bacteria, it can make a good preservative.

It is most effective at low pH levels around 3.

Adjust the pH as required with citric acid.

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Description

Common Uses of Sodium Benzoate in Food Product

Sodium benzoate is classified as Generally Recognized as Safe, and FDA regulations allow up to a .1% concentration by weight when used in foods.

Sodium benzoate acts as a bacteriostatic and fungistatic preservative.  That is, it does not kill bacteria or fungus already present, but it does inhibit their growth and reproduction.  For products which are pasteurized or otherwise sterilized, this is generally sufficient to prevent contamination.

It is most effective, and therefore most commonly used, within acidic environments.  Sodium benzoate is most often found in products such as soy sauce, sodas, pickles, salad dressing, and many other types of food or drink which are already acidic or “tangy.”  This also helps cover up the similarly acidic taste of the sodium benzoate.

Sodium benzoate is also often used as a preservative in liquid medicines, such as cough syrup.  It may also be found in non-consumable cosmetic items such as toothpaste, mouthwash, and many types of hair care product.

Sodium Benzoate is often combined with Potassium Sorbate in low pH products to provide a synergistic preservative effect against yeast and mold.

Following is a chart of the relative activity at various pH:

Activity of Benzoic Acid
pH % Active Benzoic Acid
3 94
4 61
5 13.7
6 1.55
7 0

 

There is mild concern that sodium benzoate may be linked to cancer, as it can break down into benzene – a known carcinogen.  However, the amount of benzene likely to be found in any product containing sodium benzoate is small, and the FDA has found such trace amounts are not directly harmful to human health.

NOTE: There is some concern that Sodium Benzoate in combination with L-Ascorbic Acid in products can form Benzene, a known human carcinogen. The presence of ascorbic acid and benzoates alone does not lead to the formation of benzene.  Certain additional conditions are required for trace levels of benzene to form, including heat, ultraviolet light and metallic ions in the mixture. Therefore, a product containing ascorbic acid and benzoates will not necessarily contain any detectable levels of benzene.  The use of EDTA, which chelates metallic ions can therefore be of assistance in the inhibition of benzene formation.    Citric Acid is not thought to induce significant benzene production in combination with Benzoic Acid, but some evidence suggests that in the presence of ascorbic acid and benzoic acid, citric acid may accelerate the production of benzene.  Therefore, the use of Sodium Benzoate and L-Ascorbic Acid and Citric Acid in the same cosmetic formulations should be avoided.

 

 

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