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Vegetable Glycerin

Glycerol also called glycerine or glycerin is a simple polyol compound. It is a colorless, odorless, viscous liquid that is sweet-tasting and non-toxic. The glycerol backbone is found in all lipids known as triglycerides. It is widely used in the food industry as a sweetener and humectant and in pharmaceutical and cosmetic formulations.

Glycerol is generally obtained from plant sources where it occurs as triglycerides. Triglycerides are esters of glycerol with long-chain carboxylic acids. The hydrolysis, saponification, or transesterification of these triglycerides produces glycerol.

Triglycerides can be saponified with sodium hydroxide to give glycerol and fatty sodium salt or soap. Typical plant sources include soybeans or palm. Animal-derived tallow is another source.

In food and beverages, glycerol serves as a humectant, solvent, and sweetener, and may help preserve foods. Glycerol is used in medical, pharmaceutical and personal care preparations, often as a means of improving smoothness, providing lubrication, and as a humectant.

It is found in allergen immunotherapies, cough syrups, elixirs and expectorants, toothpaste, mouthwashes, skin care products, shaving cream, hair care products, soaps, and water-based personal lubricants. In solid dosage forms like tablets, glycerol is used as a tablet holding agent. For human consumption, glycerol is classified by the U.S. FDA among the sugar alcohols as a caloric macronutrient.

Find Organic Vegetable Glycerin in the following BVO Products.


For educational purposes only. This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.