Origin:It can be prepared by treating a potassium-containing base such as potassium hydroxide or potassium carbonate with acetic acid:
CH3COOH + KOH → CH3COOK + H2O
This sort of reaction is known as an acid-base neutralization reaction. Sesquihydrate in water solution (CH3COOK·1½H2O) begins to form semihydrate at 41.3 °C. Potassium acetate is the salt that forms along with water as acetic acid and potassium hydroxide are neutralized together.Conditions/substances to avoid are: moisture, heat, flames, ignition sources, and strong oxidizing agents.
Function & characteristics: Potassium acetate is used as a catalyst in the production of polyurethanes.Potassium acetate can be used as a deicer instead of chloride salts such as calcium chloride or magnesium chloride. It offers the advantage of being less aggressive on soils and much less corrosive, and for this reason is preferred for airport runways. It is, however, more expensive. Potassium acetate is also the extinguishing agent used in class K fire extinguishers because of its ability to cool and form a crust over burning oils.
Products: Potassium acetate is used as a food additive as a preservative and acidity regulator. In the European Union, it is labeled by the E number E261; it is also approved for usage in the USA and Australia and New Zealand. Potassium hydrogen diacetate (CAS #4251-29-0 ) with formula KH(OOCCH3)2 is a related food additive with the same E number as potassium acetate. In medicine, potassium acetate is used as part of replacement protocols in the treatment of diabetic ketoacidosis because of its ability to break down into bicarbonate and help neutralize the acidotic state. In molecular biology, potassium acetate is used to precipitate dodecyl sulfate (DS) and DS-bound proteins, allowing the removal of proteins from DNA. It is also used as a salt for the ethanol precipitation of DNA.Potassium acetate is used in mixtures applied for tissue preservation, fixation, and mummification. Most museums today use the formaldehyde-based method recommended by Kaiserling in 1897 which contains potassium acetate. For example, Lenin’s mummy was soaked in a bath containing potassium acetate.
Daily intake:Up to 1 mg/kg body weight
Dietary restrictions: Yes
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