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Which of the following is a flavoring agent known as ‘Oil of Wintergreen’?
(A) Vinegar
(B) Methyl Salicylate
(C) Olive oil
(D) Tartaric acid

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Last updated date: 14th Jun 2024
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Answer
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Hint: Flavoring agents are key food additives with hundreds of varieties like fruit, nut, seafood, spice blends, vegetables etc. Besides natural flavors there are chemical flavors that imitate natural flavors. The function of flavors is to add taste to the foods as they have no nutritional properties.

Complete step by step solution:
Flavors come in both natural and artificial varieties. Artificial flavors are carefully selected to provide a larger and more diverse variety of flavors.
On the other hand, natural flavors incorporate natural derivatives such as fruits, spices and vegetables to achieve a broad array of flavors.
The flavor agent known as “oil of wintergreen” is Methyl Salicylate.
Methyl salicylate (oil of wintergreen or wintergreen oil) is an organic ester naturally produced by many species of plants, particularly wintergreen.
Therefore, the pure oil of wintergreen is methyl salicylate.
It is a colorless, viscous liquid with a sweet fruity odor reminiscent of root beer but often called “minty” (as it is an ingredient in mint candies) and hence, this minty flavor in Oil of wintergreens comes from the chemical methyl salicylate.
Moreover, this is an anti-inflammatory drug in a group of drugs called salicylates. This medicine works by reducing substances in the body that cause pain and inflammation.

Hence, option B is correct.

Note: Food and beverage manufacturers have used artificial flavors for decades, and they provide important benefits. For instance, artificial flavors allow people who have food allergies to safely consume flavors they might otherwise not be able to enjoy. They also allow people to enjoy a variety of flavors even when they are out of season.