Ingredient Information

Potassium Sorbate


Medical Conditions



Potassium sorbate is used to prevent the growth of yeast and mold in food products. It is used in wine as a stabilizer. Potassium sorbate is used to preserve items like cheese, yogurt, dried meat and fruit. It is also used in baked goods.

Other Use and Industries

Potassium sorbate is used in cosmetics to increase a product's shelf life. It is used in personal care products like conditioners, shampoos and lotions to prevent microbial growth. Herbal products use potassium sorbate as an ingredient for the same reasons.

It is also used in the pharmaceutical industry as a dietary supplement.

Health Effects

Potassium sorbate prevents the spread of disease by preserving food and inhibiting microbial growth. It reduces the risk of food poisoning by delaying the growth of salmonella. Prolonged use of potassium sorbate can cause allergic reactions like itching, runny nose, stomach pain and swelling of the throat and mouth. Potassium sorbate is also known to trigger migraines. An overconsumption can lead to hyperkalemia, which is a condition where there is excess potassium in the blood. Hyperkalemia is characterized by irregular heartbeat, weakness and nausea, among other symptoms.

Those who are pregnant or who have heart disease should carefully monitor their consumption of potassium sorbate.


Potassium sorbate was discovered in the1850s by the French. It was extracted from the mountain ash tree. Potassium sorbate is found naturally in berries. Today, most of the potassium sorbate used is synthetically manufactured.

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