What are Flavoring Chemicals?
Flavorings can be either natural or man-made substances. Flavoring chemicals can also be formed from mixtures into chemical compounds to achieve hundreds of flavors. These mixtures provide fragrance and taste perception for specific flavors for foods and liquids. Many flavoring chemicals are volatile and can be hazardous while being stored and in the processing stage. The biggest health hazard from flavorings is inhalation from solid and liquid flavoring chemicals that have evaporated into the air. These chemicals can also be easily inhaled in the form of a powder through production processes.
Take a look at some common flavoring chemicals below, to learn about safe storage and first aid methods when dealing with flavoring chemicals.
Common Flavoring Chemicals
Diacetyl is a common flavoring chemical used in butter flavoring, dairy flavors, and brown flavors (caramel and butterscotch). It also occurs in some foods naturally. Diacetyl is one of the most common air contaminants found in microwave popcorn and flavoring manufacturing facilities. Diacetyl is known for causing respiratory issues including lung disease.
First Aid Measures: If swallowed, wash mouth with water and call a physician immediately. If inhaled move to fresh air if possible. If breathing is difficult, contact emergency professional for oxygen. Wash skin immediately if contact with skin; use copious amounts of water.
Acetic Acid is highly combustible and is commonly used in flavoring substances, including salad dressings, ketchup and other condiments. Exposure to acetic acid can occur through inhalation, ingestion, eye or skin contact and absorption through the skin.
First Aid Measures: If swallowed seek medical attention immediately. If inhaled request respiratory support and seek medical attention immediately. Wash skin immediately with ample amounts of lukewarm water.
Storing Flavoring Chemicals
Flammable and combustible flavoring chemicals should be kept in chemical storage lockers equipped with fire suppression systems when mixing and dispensing flavoring chemicals. Chemical storage buildings should be equipped with mechanical ventilation to provide consistent airflow throughout each room, if more than one storage room is being utilized. Shelving and racking systems allow organized storage solutions for safe chemical storage. Do not store incompatible flavoring chemical inside the same room. Utilize solid fire-rated or non-fire rated partition walls to separate incompatible substances, to create a safe storage atmosphere.
To receive a complimentary chemical storage consultation for your flavoring chemical facility contact US Chemical Storage online or call 800-233-1480.
CDC. National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). Flavorings-Related Lung Disease.
Occupational Exposure to Flavoring Substances: Health Effects and Hazard Control. Safety and Health Information Bulletin. SHIB October, 2010.