Potassium Metabisulfite In Wine: What You Need To Know

Winy (Potassium Metabisulfite KMBS) Lodi Wine Labs


Wine is one of the most popular alcoholic beverages in the world. It is made by fermenting grapes or other fruits. However, to ensure that wine retains its flavor and aroma, winemakers use various additives. One of these additives is potassium metabisulfite.

What is Potassium Metabisulfite?

Potassium metabisulfite is a chemical compound that is commonly used in winemaking. It is a white crystalline powder that is soluble in water. Potassium metabisulfite is a sulfite compound that releases sulfur dioxide gas when it is added to wine.

Why is Potassium Metabisulfite Added to Wine?

Potassium metabisulfite is added to wine for several reasons. Firstly, it is used as a preservative to prevent the growth of bacteria and other microorganisms that can spoil wine. Secondly, it is used to prevent oxidation, which can cause wine to spoil and lose its flavor. Finally, it is used to sterilize equipment and bottles used in winemaking.

How Much Potassium Metabisulfite is Added to Wine?

The amount of potassium metabisulfite added to wine varies depending on the type of wine and the winemaker’s preference. However, the maximum amount of potassium metabisulfite allowed by law is 350 parts per million (ppm) for white wine and 250 ppm for red wine.

Is Potassium Metabisulfite Safe?

Potassium metabisulfite is generally safe when used in small amounts. However, some people may be allergic to sulfites and may experience symptoms such as hives, difficulty breathing, and nausea. Therefore, wine bottles containing potassium metabisulfite must carry a warning label.

How to Use Potassium Metabisulfite in Winemaking

Potassium metabisulfite is usually added to wine during the fermentation process. It can also be added to wine before bottling to prevent oxidation. The amount of potassium metabisulfite added depends on the pH level of the wine. A higher pH level requires more potassium metabisulfite.

The Benefits of Using Potassium Metabisulfite in Winemaking

Using potassium metabisulfite in winemaking has several benefits. Firstly, it helps to preserve the wine’s flavor and aroma. Secondly, it prevents the growth of harmful microorganisms that can spoil the wine. Finally, it helps to prevent oxidation, which can cause the wine to spoil and lose its flavor.


Potassium metabisulfite is an important additive in winemaking. It is used to preserve wine, prevent oxidation and sterilize equipment. Although it is generally safe, some people may be allergic to sulfites. Winemakers must ensure that they use the correct amount of potassium metabisulfite to achieve the desired results.