Acetic acid (also called ethanoic acid) is a weak organic acid. Acidity of acetic acid affects microbiological quality, cooking results, flavour or texture of food. Acetic acid and its anhydride are widely used in the production of modified starches, so called starch acetates as well as dual-modified starches. Unlike a lot of other food additives, acetic acid is commonly used in home cooking.
Formic acid is very frequently used in food products as a preservative or on crops as a pesticide. Formic Acid lends itself to some interesting effects and interactions due to its highly versatile quality. It is an extremely useful food additive. When consumed at normal levels, it is very quickly and easily metabolized by our bodies and eliminated in a safe and healthy manner. In food industry, formic acid actually initiates fermentation at a lower temperature, greatly reducing the overall time that it takes to produce while increasing the nutritional value of the finished product.
The salts of phosphoric acid are used in many dairy products to modify the proteins and alter the pH to produce a higher-quality product. The addition of phosphates derived from phosphoric acid to cheese results in smooth, shelf-stable products. Phosphoric acid or phosphates can also be found in milk, buttermilk, cottage cheese and nondairy coffee creamers. The most widely consumed source of phosphoric acid is soft drinks. Phosphoric acid is responsible for the characteristic pungent taste associated with colas. Its purpose in the food industry is to give a sharp flavor to food or to serve as a preservative.
Citric acid is a naturally occurring acid found primarily in several varieties of fruits and vegetables such as lemons and limes. It is a white crystalline powder, which is used in different processed foods and soft drinks. It has a pleasant citrus flavor that works well in soft drinks. Citric acid tastes sour, and helps to prevent bacterial colonization of foods. It is an essential intermediate used in the production of energy-providing nutrients - proteins, carbohydrates, and fats.