Potassium hydroxide or KOH is well known as a versatile cleaning agent. However, the power of this basic industrial chemical goes way beyond keeping the kitchen clean.

With a wide variety of applications in industries as diverse as chemicals, farming, food processing, manufacturing, cosmetics, and countless other niche sectors, here are some of many uses for potassium hydroxide:

KOH in Agriculture

·       Potassium hydroxide is used to adjust and regulate the pH of soil.

·       KOH is used to produce fertilizers by supplying potassium (one of the major plant foods) to crops, especially to those crops which cannot tolerate chloride ions.

·       It detoxifies glycerine so that it can be used in animal feed.

·       It is also used in herbicides and fungicides, as a mixture of phosphorous acid (a non-pesticide compound) and KOH can be regularly sprayed for pest and disease prevention. On a practical level, crops that are treated this way will have almost no pesticide residue on them.

·       In fact, KOH is even used when washing fruit before they are sold or stored.

KOH in the Chemical Industry

·       Potassium hydroxide is used to make several different potassium chemicals, such as bromate, bromide, potassium aluminate, laurate, formate, gluconate, etc.

·       KOH is used to adjust the pH of chemical solutions.

·       It also promotes drying, and so is used as a desiccant to remove the water from basic solvents, especially amines and pyridines.

·       In the refining of petroleum and natural gas, KOH helps remove organic acids and sulphur compounds.

·       Additionally, potassium hydroxide works as a catalyst in the production of biodiesel from fats and oils.

·       Carbon dioxide (CO2), sulphur trioxide (SO3), and nitrogen trioxide (NO3) found in gas streams are absorbed with the help of KOH.

·       It is a useful agent in chemical analysis, for example in the titration of acids (helping to determine a level of concentration).

KOH in Cosmetics

·       Potassium hydroxide is used to make manicure products as it helps clean nails and dissolve cuticles.

·       It is used in shaving products as it aids hair removal.

·       KOH is also a raw material in the production of lotions, shampoos, hairsprays, and other cosmetics.

KOH in the Food Industry

·       Potassium hydroxide is used to soften olives.

·       KOH is a common food additive and is used to make soft drinks, chocolate, and cocoa. Among other properties, it acts as a thickener and stabilizer in foods such as ice cream.

·       KOH also helps to make crispier baked goods, such as pretzels.

·       It can be added to food as a preservative.

·       It is used to produce the colour caramel.

·       KOH is used for washing and the chemical peeling of fruit and vegetables.

To learn more about the uses of potassium hydroxide in manufacturing, in the production of soap and household cleaners, and numerous other clever applications read: Uses for KOH in Soap, Energy & Batteries, Manufacturing, and More.

If you are looking to source premium quality potassium hydroxide, please visit AG CHEMI GROUP or contact Timur on +420 777 227 387 or Timur.Khafizov@agchemigroup.eu

Photo credit: Polina Tankilevitch from Pexels, Tom Fisk, Mark Stebnicki, Harry Cunningham, Hilary Halliwell, & AG CHEMI GROUP