Benzoic Acid

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Benzoic acid is a colorless crystalline copound. It is one of the benzoates, which also includes sodium benzoate and potassium benzoate. Among the foods in which benzoic acid occurs naturally are cranberries, prunes, plums, cinnamon, ripe cloves, and most berries. As an inactive ingredient in the pharmaceutical industry, it is used as antimicrobial preservative, antifungal, and tablet and capsule lubricant. Benzoic acid has been used in combination with salicylic acid for use as an antifungal for athlete's foot and ringworm. Benzoic acid is also a precursor to many chemical reactions yielding organic compounds. When absorbed systemically, it is conjugated to glycine in the liver and excreted as hippuric acid; it is not considered highly toxic.

Appearance White crystalline powder or colourless crystals
Solubility Slightly soluble in water, soluble in boiling water ,freely soluble in 96% Ethanol,freely soluble in fatty oil
Melting Point 121⁰ C-124⁰ C
Identification The samples give the reaction of Benzoates
Appearance Solution is clear and colourless
Assay on dry basis 99.0%-100.5%
Halogenated compounds (ppm) 300 max
Arsenic Max.2.0 ppm
Carbonisable Substances 0.5 gm sample in 5 ml of concentrated H2SO4.The solution is not more intense than solution
Oxidisable Substances 0.2 gm. Spl. In boiling water + 1 ml diluted H2SO4 =0.2 ml of 0.02 ml KMNO4. After 5 min.the solution is still pink coloured
Moisture content 0.5% by KFR Method
Sulphated Ash NMT 0.1%
Heavy Metals ppm 10 ppm max

Shelf life: 5 years
Storage: Clean dry well ventilated place on platform above the ground

Uses of Benzoic Acid
  • The production of phenol involves the use of benzoic acid.
  • This compound is used in ointments that prevent or treat fungal skin diseases.
  • C6H5COOH is used as a preservative in the food industry.
  • Benzoic acid is an ingredient in many cosmetic products, such as lipsticks. It is also a precursor to benzoyl chloride.
  • One of the components of toothpaste, mouthwash, and facewash creams is C6H5COOH This compound is also used in the manufacture of dyes and in insect repellants.
  • The Technical grade of Benzoic Acid is used as an intermediate in the manufacture of chemicals, alkyd resins, polyesters, plasticizers, dyestuffs, preservatives, and rubber activators and retardants, and as a diverting agent in crude oil recovery applications.
  • Benzoic acid's salt (sodium benzoate) is commonly used as a pH adjustor and preservative in food, preventing the growth of microbes to keep food safe.

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