What is glycerin? The most interesting facts


There is a lot of information on the Internet about such a product as glycerin. However, we would like to state for you only the most interesting information and facts, and information on your incoming requests. Interesting? Then read on!

was first discovered by Swedish scientist Carl Scheele. This happened in 1779 with a rather non-trivial experiment. Namely, when heating olive oil and lead oxide. But the French chemist M.E. Chevrel has already called it glycerin. After in 1811 he studied in detail the composition of this viscous, sweetish liquid and deduced the formula of glycerin. Later, it was Chevrel who patented a method for obtaining glycerin by saponifying natural fats with alkalis, which is still used today.

What is glycerin?

Glycerin is essentially a trihydric alcohol that mixes well with water as well as alcohol. It has the ability to dissolve organic and inorganic compounds and is non-toxic. Thanks to these qualities, glycerin is used in many areas of production and agriculture. Glycerin tastes sweet, which is probably why it got its name ( from the Greek word “glyceros”, which means sweet).

But it’s not that simple. Because glycerin is different. So what is glycerin? It depends on how it is produced, and there are four of them today, but more on that a little later.
Glycerin is technical and distilled. Technical glycerin or glycerol, as it is called in Europe, contains up to 85% of the main substance, and the rest of the contents are impurities (ash, methanol, water, etc.). There may be a yellowish color and a specific smell. Distilled glycerin has a high degree of purification, more than 94%, odorless, transparent.

You ask “What is food and pharmacopoeial glycerin?”. Food glycerin and pharmacopoeial glycerin – the same distilled glycerin, in accordance with GOST 6824-96, of a high level of purification, with a basic substance content of at least 99.9% .

Having dealt with the classification, back to the question “what are the ways to get glycerin”. First of all, they should be divided according to the source material into:



The main synthetic method for obtaining glycerin is the processing of propylene gas, which is produced during the distillation of petroleum products. And the most common vegetable method, which we have already told you about above, is the saponification of natural vegetable fats.

Glycerine is also a by-product of biofuel production and can be synthesized from the hydrolysis of wood flour and starch. However, the cost of glycerin produced by such methods is unprofitable.

Do you want the TOP 10 industries where glycerin is used?

Tell us where glycerin comes in:

  1. As part of a coolant for heating systems and antifreeze

  2. Glycerin as fertilizer.

  3. In the textile industry

  4. Glycerin in cosmetic products

  5. Glycerin in pharmaceuticals

  6. Glycerin for agriculture

  7. Glycerin in confectionery

  8. Glycerine in the paint industry

  9. In the leather industry to soften leather

  10. Glycerin for the production of paper products.

    And this is not a complete list of industries where glycerin is used.

Can technical glycerin be used for food and cosmetic purposes? Undesirable, distilled or purified vegetable glycerin is used for cosmetic and food production.

One ​​of the most frequently asked questions to managers of the Novokhim Company is the question “Why does glycerin freeze at positive temperatures?”. Let’s figure it out.

First of all, this indicates that glycerin is highly purified, free of impurities and concentrated. And secondly, the melting point of concentrated purified glycerin is 17.9 °C. This means that at lower temperatures pure glycerin is a solid, and at higher temperatures it is a liquid. These are the natural physical properties of pure glycerin.

Well, now you know almost everything about glycerin. A You can always buy glycerin directly on the Novokhim website or place an order by phone. If you have any questions, please contact us and we will be happy to answer them.