Significance of ammonium acetate

Where to buy ammonium acetate in India?

Ammonium acetate can be purchased from any local chemical supplier, manufacturer, or third-party dealer in India. Though this trend is still predominant in modern India, it is slowly moving towards digitization. Experts say that digitization will dominant the chemical procurement process in the next five years with many people already preferring digital platforms over conventional methods. The on-going COVID-19 pandemic has also fueled the digitization process in the chemical industry. The strict regional lockdown and social distancing practice has made chemical buyers reconsider the chemical purchase process.

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Ammonium acetate: An overview

Ammonium acetate is a chemical compound with the formula NH4CH3CO2. It is an ammonium salt obtained by reaction of ammonia with acetic acid. It is commonly known as the spirit of Mindererus in aqueous solution, while referred to as ammonium ethanoate by IUPAC nomenclature. Ammonium acetate is used as a food acidity regulator, but it is no longer approved for this purpose in the European Union (EU).

AppearanceWhite solid crystals
Molecular Weight77.08 g/mol
Melting point114℃
Density1.17 g/cm3 at 20 °C and 1.073 g/cm3 at25 °C
OdorMild acetic odor
SolubilitySoluble in alcohol, sulphur dioxide, acetone, and liquid ammonia

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Uses of ammonium acetate

Ammonium acetate is an important chemical used in a wide range of applications, some of them includes:

  • It is popularly used as a food additive for changing or maintaining the acidity or alkalinity of the food
  • Ammonium acetate is used in the manufacture of explosives
  • It is used for making foam rubber
  • It is widely used in chemical analysis
  • It is used as a catalyst in Knoevenagel condensation, a modification of aldol condensation
  • It is used in the manufacturing of vinyl plastics
  • It is used in preserving meat
  • It is used in different agricultural products
  • Ammonium acetate also finds use in pharmaceuticals
  • It is used as an important chemical reagent in analytical chemistry
  • It is used in agricultural chemistry for determining soil cation exchange capacity
  • It is used to check the availability of potassium in soil
  • It is used as a de-icing agent
  • It is used as a catalyst in many chemical reactions

How to prepare ammonium acetate and its solution?

Ammonium acetate is produced by neutralizing acetic acid with ammonium carbonate. It can also be prepared by saturating glacial acetic acid with ammonia, but the hygroscopic (tendency to absorb moisture from the air) nature of ammonium acetate makes it difficult to obtain it in crystalline form.

For preparing an ammonium acetate solution, you can follow the given calculations. 10 M ammonium acetate solution in 1 L can be prepared by dissolving 770 grams of ammonium acetate in 800 ml of water. Water can be further adjusted for 1 L of the solution. If you want to prepare a 100 ml ammonium acetate solution, then dissolve 77 grams of ammonium acetate in 70 ml of water and make up the volume to 100 ml with water. The preparation is carried out at room temperature.

Ammonium acetate toxicity

Ammonium acetate is found to have a moderate level of toxicity on human beings and there are some risks of bioaccumulation. It is recognized as an irritant, but there is no major information available on chronic toxicity. Potential health risk includes the irritation of eye, skin, digestive tract, and respiratory tract. It is found to be harmful in case of absorption through the skin. In the case of ingestion, it irritates the gastrointestinal tract with nausea, vomiting, and even diarrhea. In extreme cases, it may cause muscle tremors and impairment of motor functions. When inhaled, it causes irritation of the respiratory tract.

First aid measures

Eye Contact: Check for any contact lenses and remove it. Immediately flush your eyes with plenty of cold water at least for 15 minutes. Ensure to lift the upper and lower eyelids occasionally while flushing water. If the irritation persists, seek medical help immediately.

Skin Contact: Remove any cloth in the contaminated area and flush it with cold water. Clean the area with soap. Then, cover the affected area with an emollient. In case you find the irritation further developing, immediately get medical attention.

Inhalation: In the event of inhalation, move away from exposure and get some fresh air immediately. Get medical help if the irritation persists. If unable to breathe, give artificial respiration, and immediately get the medical attention.

Ingestion: In case of ingestion, rinse the mouth thoroughly with plenty of water and drink 2-4 cups of milk or water to dilute any trace of the ingested chemical. Get medical help in case of any discomfort. Never try to induce vomiting without the guidance of a medical professional. If the person is unconscious, do not try to give anything by mouth, immediately rush him/her for medical help. If a large amount of the chemicals is swallowed, call a doctor immediately. Loosen tight clothing such as a collar, tie, belt, or waistband, allowing them to breathe.

Ammonium acetate: Handling

Direct exposure to ammonium acetate can cause irritation of the eyes, skin, respiratory tract, and digestive tract. Hence, it is important to follow the standard handling procedure while working on ammonium acetate. Prohibit eating, drinking, and smoking in the area where the chemical is being used, processed, or stored. The person dealing with ammonium acetate should wash hands and face after the use of the chemical. Put the appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) while handling ammonium acetate. Ensure to minimize dust generation and accumulation. Avoid contact with eyes, skin, and clothing. Keep the container tightly closed and make sure you have adequate ventilation while working on ammonium acetate.

PPEs you should use

Eyes: Wear appropriate protective eyeglasses or chemical safety goggles.

Skin: Wear appropriate protective gloves and shoes to prevent skin exposure.

Clothing: Wear a laboratory apron and other appropriate protective clothing to prevent skin exposure.

Respirators: Avoid sniffing the chemical, and make sure to use the chemical in the place of appropriate ventilation.

Ammonium acetate: Storage

Ammonium acetate should be stored in a tightly-closed container in a cool, dry, well-ventilated area away from direct sunlight. Use the appropriate container to avoid environmental contamination. It is recommended to keep the container tightly closed and sealed until the chemical is ready for use. If the container is already opened, make sure to carefully reseal and keep it upright to prevent any leakage. Keep the unlabeled chemicals away from the storage area, as it may cause any confusion.

Ammonium acetate: Global market

Ammonium Acetate Market size is significantly growing due to the growing food & beverage consumption, pharmaceutical, and chemical applications. The increase in R&D activities in the food, chemicals, and pharmaceutical industry has also driven the market growth. The market is expected to further growth without any major slump until the year 2026.

The global ammonium acetate market is dominated by North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, and the Middle East and Africa. Asia Pacific region accounts for the largest share of ammonium acetate, majorly due to the developing economies such as India, China, and South Korea. Furthermore, the growing drug and chemical market in China and the government policies of pharmaceutical safety had added to the growing market of ammonium acetate in the region.

Key players of the ammonium acetate market

  • Jarchem
  • NASi
  • Niacet
  • Yangshan Biochemical
  • Langfang Tianke
  • Runhong Technology
  • Yafeng Chemical
  • Victor Chemical
  • Jiatai Chemical

The major use of ammonium acetate in the chemical and pharmaceutical industry has left its market not being affected even during the COVID-19 pandemic. The market will see exponential growth in the coming year and will not fade away anytime sooner.