Q:

Is potassium benzoate harmful?

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Quick Answer

The Food and Drug Administration has not determined a health risk from potassium benzoate within food and beverages as of 2014; however, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has established regulatory limits for potassium benzoate presence, according to the American Beverage Association. Potassium benzoate is a preservative.

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Full Answer

As of 2014, the Food and Drug Administration estimates that 95 percent of a person's exposure to potassium benzoate is through breathing versus ingesting it in food. The purpose of potassium benzoate is to prevent the growth of microorganisms in foods and beverages, according to the American Beverage Association. The preservative enhances the safety of food and beverage products and protects flavors.

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