What are the Functions of Sodium Metabisulfite?

Sodium metabisulfite, also called sodium pyrosulfite or disodium, is an inorganic compound. This compound has many chemical properties that make it useful for a variety of industrial purposes. However, there are many dangers of working with or ingesting this compound, which make some of its uses---especially that of a food preservative---a topic of research and controversy.

y Sodium metabisulfite is a crystalline powder that is white to yellow in color. It is soluble in water. When dissolved, it releases sulfur dioxide gas, which is unpleasant smelling. The chemical formula is Na2S2O5, and the molecular structure is shown in the illustration. Sodium metabisulfite reacts with oxygen when left exposed to air, changing it to a sulfate.

Chemical Properties
y Sodium metabisulfite functions in many chemical reac tions. It can purify or isolate aldehydes, which are highly reactive organic compounds commonly used in making resins or dyes. It can also purify or isolate ketones, which are organic compounds resulting from the breakdown of fats. It is a reducer, meaning it can decrease the amount of oxygen in a substance. It also has the ability to sulfonate, meaning it can react with sulfuric acid.

Industrial Uses
y The many chemical properties of sodium metabisulfite make it a versatile compound useful in many applic ations. It can eliminate dissolved oxygen in waste water and in pipes. It functions as a bleaching agent, which is useful in making paper pulp, cotton and wool. It is used in water treatment plants to remove excess chlorine. In beer and wine manufacturing, it is often used to sterilize the equipment.

Food Preservative
y Sodium metabisulfite is used as a food preservative and is usually noted as E223. Sodium metabisulfite acts as an antimicrobial, inhibiting the growth of fungi and bacteria, thereby keeping food fresh and safe. However, this use is controversial because it can cause allergic reactions, especially in those with sensitivities to sulfites or those who suffer from asthma. It is commonly found in fruit juices, vinegars, pickles and dried fruits.

Dangers
y Sodium metabisulfite is a dangerous compound, and care should be taken when using it. When it comes into contact with skin, it can cause a severe allergic reaction, and repeated contact can cause dermatitis. If inhaled, it can cause respirator y irritation, and for those with asthma, it may cause a severe reaction. It is also an eye irritant, so if it makes contact with the eyes, immediately flush them with water. Do not swallow sodium metabisulfite; it can cause gastrointestinal irritation, inc luding nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.

Storage and Handling
y Since sodium metabisulfite breaks down when exposed to air, it should be stored in a tightly closed container. It should be kept in a cool and dry area and be protected from moisture. The generation and accumulation of dust should be minimized to avoid inhalation or contact with skin or eyes.

vegetables.hyfoma. the moisture content is lowered. 3.Read more: What are the Functions of Sodium Metabisulfite? | eHow. while preserving the food's nutrients and enhancing the flavor. If properly sealed and left unopened. Stored properly. Vitamin A (beta carotene) and C. Various models of food dehydrators are available with plastic or steel chassis and range in price from $100 to $350. . the dehydration process minimally affects the nutritional value of foods. dehydrated foods can sit on your shelf for up to 20 years. especially if you have a garden. The initial cost of the machine will pale in comparison to the amount of money you will save by using it. When dehydrating foods. mold. and can be stored easily. Meats can even be dehydrated safely. and keeps bacteria. 2.com/en/content/processing-technology/heating-cooling/dehydration/ THE BENEFITS OF DEHYDRATING FOOD FOR PRESERVATION Dehydrating food dates back to biblical times when it was a dire necessity and not a culinary delicacy. fruits and meats can be preserved.ehow. as well as breaks down the food's structural fibers. magnesium. selenium. pasteurizing and chemical additives. The process involved in canning is time-consuming and carries the risk of spoilage if not done properly. fiber content. flowers. almost made the ancient practice of dehydration extinct until recently. dehydration remains one of the most nutritious. The bounty produced by your garden or deals at the local farmer's market can be saved and enjoyed at a later date. 4. when dehydrating food is now enjoying a much-deserved resurgence. To a lesser degree. canning. Even with all of our food storage technology. potassium. Fresh vegetables. freezing. but it also removes many of the food's natural nutrients and enzymes. and sodium levels are not altered or lost in dehydration. Modern methods of preserving foods.com/about_5155120_functions -sodium-metabisulfite. freezing also alters the nutrient content.html#ixzz1Dwg7hdn9 http://www. safe. through refrigeration. The benefits of preserving foods through dehydration can be summed up in a simple "Top Ten" list: 1. The canning process requires intense boiling to destroy any potential bacteria. Dehydrated fruits and vegetables are safe from spoilage. stored. and consumed safely. yeast and natural chemical reactions from attacking the food. depending upon the machine's construction and the number of drying trays it can hold. and flavor-saving methods of food preservation. Calorie values remain the same but the fat and salt content is reduced. Many fresh fruits and vegetables cannot be frozen successfully. Unlike canning or freezing.com http://www. herbs and fruits do not have to rot in the garden. Dehydrated foods are free of pesticides and chemicals. dehydrated foods have a longer shelf life than any other preservation methods. economical. Herbs. carbohydrates. require a small investment of time and money.

Oxidation causes fruits and vegetables to tur n brown when their cut surface is exposed to air. or lunchbox snacks. Dehydrated foods are readily available to provide nutrition and sustenance during a natural disaster or hard economic times.com/items/1247356-food-dehydration-food-safety-food-storage-emergencyfood-natural-food-process Sodium Bisulfite is a food preservative. Dehydrated foods save space in your pantry or cupboard because they are not stored in spoilage-prone cans. In wine making you must wait 24 hours after adding the Sodium Bisulfite to the grape juice before adding the yeast because the sulfur dioxide gas also kills . It is commonly used on fruits and vegetables when dehydrating or home canning. Entire meals can be dehydrated and re-hydrated by adding water. if you are prone to sulfur allergic reactions. 8. The sulfur gases that are released from the Sodium Bisulfite act as a sanitizer. broth or other liquids. Sodium Bisulfite and Sulfur has been used in the home food preservation process and food dehydration for a long before other methods. jars. killing al l molds. The sulfur dioxide gas penetrates the liquid it was added to and then eventually dissipates into the air over the period of several hours. It is an anti oxidant and is an excellent way to prevent oxidation of fruits and vegetables. Home dehydration is also much less expensive than purchasing commercially dehydrated. 10. The Excal ibur brand of Sodium Bisulfite is a powder which you add to water to make the liquid for dipping or soaking your fruits and vegetables in. A note o caution. While preserving the color of fruits and vegetables it also helps the fruits and vegetables to retain their natural flavor and nutrients. or bottles.5. Dehydrated foods are great for picnics. 9.helium. Dehydrating your own fresh herbs and spices gives your favorite recipes an enhanced. when a conventional cooking method is not readily available. backpacking excursions. Sodium Bisulfite is beneficial in canning fruits because it not only prevents oxidations of the fruits it also kills the microbes that cause spoiling. check with your physician before using Sodium Bisulfite as a pretreatment dip on an y food item you want to eat. Forget the processed store-bought jars of herbs and spices. packaged products. A variety of soups made with dehydrated vegetables can ease the stress of providing a healthy meal during a busy day. potent flavor that commercially offered products are unable to deliver. 6. It is safer and less labor and time consuming than canning. When Sodium Bisulfite is dissolved in a liquid it relea ses a sulfur dioxide gas. http://www. 7. bacteria and germs that spoil and brown fruits and vegetables making it a great food preservative. camping.

Dehydrate according to your dehydrator instructions or until the fruit has reached your desired dryness.yeasts. http://www. Oddly. After 24 hours all of the gasses have been released and then y east can be added to start the fermenting process.veggiesensations. This second dose of Sodium Bisulfite will prevent the wine from turning into vinegar and will preserve the color and flavor. Sodium Bisulfite is added into wine again after the fermenting process is complete and wine is ready to be bottled. rinse lightly under cold tap water and drain off excess moisture. Then place the fruit on the dehydrator drying trays.com/useofsobi. To prepare the Sodium Bisulfite for treating fruits and vegetables for dehydrating. add 1 tablespoon Sodium Bisulfite to a gallon of water. Soak slices of fruit and or vegetables for 5 minutes or halves of fruit for 15 minutes.html . remove fruit and vegetables. When soaking is complete.

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful