Potassium Sorbate is widely used in cosmetic and personal care products to extend product shelf life by inhibiting growth of microorganisms. Alternative to parabens.
Potassium sorbate forms in response to a chemical reaction to potassium hydroxide and sorbic acid. It was first discovered in the Mountain Ash tree, but it is now predominantly commercially produced for use as a preservative. It is widely used to preserve processed foods like canned goods, dairy and cheese products.
The antimicrobial activity of this compound effectively hinders activity of microorganisms such as fungal, mold, and bacterial growth. This, in turn, controls fermentation and extends the shelf life of the products. It is often used as a preservative in lieu of parabens.