E228 is a food supplement approved by the European Union (EU) and used as an antimicrobial synthetic preservative in foods. Potassium hydrosulfite can also be used as a strengthening agent and as a disinfectant.
There are other names for additives: Potassium bisulphite, potassium biosulfite, E228, potassium hydrosulfite. Belongs to the group of harmful food additives.
Description of Food Additive
E228 is a food-grade additive obtained in laboratory conditions. Sulfur dioxide and an aqueous solution of potassium carbonate type were used for production; a chemical reaction occurs at t of approximately 100 degrees. The result is a substance with the formula KHSO3 - potassium hydrosulfite. The additive is designed to react exclusively with water-based solutions. Manufacturers buy potassium pyrosulfite (white, dry, odorless powdery substance), place it in an aqueous medium and as a result, potassium hydrosulfite is formed. Another name is found - potassium bisulfite, in the chemical composition of which there are additional chemical additives. The main feature of the supplement is the suppression of bacterial and fungal flora in products. Due to this feature, the additive is used as a preservative, less often as an antioxidant, color bleach.
Fields of application
E228 is most often seen in semi-finished products with a vegetable or fruit base, sugary products, natural fruit jams, dried fruits, dried cabbage, dried or canned mushrooms, natural wine. For whitening actions add to semi-finished products from dried potatoes and breakfast cereals. Potassium bisulphite can also be found in alcoholic beverages, avoiding the processes of fermentation, souring, while maintaining color, taste and smell.
It is forbidden to use the additive in the food industry in the production process: beer, fruit juices, meat, milk and dairy products, flour, baby food.
People who adhere to a diet should carefully read the information on the package, as often products with this supplement are very high in calories.
The list of products in which this supplement can be found is long. But this does not mean that it is safe for the body. The permissible amount of E228 for a person is 0.7 milligrams per kilogram of body weight.
The use of additives in the food industry is allowed in the countries of the European Union, Russia and Belarus. In the US, the supplement is banned. There is no information on the legality of the use of E228 in Ukraine and Canada.
The additive is a powerful antioxidant - a substance that slows down the oxidation processes and significantly increases the shelf life of products.
Benefits and harm to the body
Synthetic additive does not possess biological value, therefore, potassium hydrosulfate does not bear any benefit for the body. Let us consider in more detail the harm of this food supplement, since it is not in vain that it belongs to the category of dangerous ones. Most of the population is not recommended to use products with E228 in their diet. When using the supplement within a certain norm, it is easily metabolized in the body and excreted from it by the kidneys.
Allergic reactions to Potassium bisulphite are often observed, and people who suffer from chronic bronchial asthma may experience bronchospasm and choking. There have been cases with the development of anaphylactic shock.
The risk group includes people who have a sulfide blockage of thiamine pyrophosphate production (a vital form of vitamin B). In such people, after ingestion of E228, malfunctions of the digestive and nervous systems develop.
It is also contraindicated to use products with this synthetic preservative for people with severe gastrointestinal diseases.
In Russia, potassium hydrosulfite is produced in small volumes. The main Russian manufacturer is the company NORD (St. Petersburg).
For winemaking, potassium bisulfite in its pure form is produced by ERBSLOEH GEISENHEIM AG - Germany.
TianjinZhentaiChemical company - China supplies a large volume of solid pyrosulphite additive.
E228 is packed in tight-fitting plastic canisters. Often you can find the powdered form of the additive (in the form of peroxide), which is supplied in dense plastic bags. In order for the additive E228 to get to the manufacturers, the peroxide powder is diluted with water.
Despite the fact that the supplement is approved for use in food products, experts, doctors and nutritionists recommend avoiding products whose chemical composition includes E228, which is so dangerous for the body.