Sodium bicarbonate, a raw material of high purity, naturally occurs in the ground and in living beings. Its chemical formula is NaHCO3. In agriculture, it is marketed under the trademark Bicar®Z (the Z stands for zootechnics), and it is manufactured by one of two processes: Solvay's synthetic manufacturing process, or extracted in the form of trona.
Sodium bicarbonate is an environmentally friendly mineral substance that poses no risk of toxicity to the body or to the environment.
Bicar®Z: the standard in agriculture
Sodium bicarbonate is used in the manufacture of many everyday products (hygiene products, cosmetics, etc.). In the agri-food industry, it is known as E500(ii) and is used for its ability to regulate acidity, and its action as a leavening and anticaking agent. In agriculture, it is used as a raw material in animal feed and as a buffer in methanizers.
The different names of sodium bicarbonate
Sodium bicarbonate goes under a variety of names, depending on the sector in which it is used. In chemistry, it is known as sodium hydrogen carbonate. In the agri-food business, it is referred to as sodium acid carbonate. In medicine, and homeopathy in particular, the term Natrium bicarbonicum is employed. In everyday language we call it bicarbonate of soda, although this is not the most appropriate name. Indeed, this brings to mind the corrosive properties of soda, even though sodium bicarbonate does not contain any soda and is not at all corrosive. In Belgium, the term Vichy salt is sometimes used to refer to sodium bicarbonate. Indeed, it is one of the ingredients in Vichy water and Vichy tablets.