This chemical is a white, solid powder. It does not produce any odor, but it does leave a slight alkaline taste when ingested. It is stable in the air and highly soluble in water. Sodium tripolyphosphate is typically referred to as STPP, which is how it appears on most labels. It is not very toxic and non-flammable.
One of the primary uses for STPP is as a water softener in many types of detergent. This helps to ensure that they work properly in hard water. Another primary purpose for STPP is to preserve a variety of food products, such as seafood, poultry, and animal feeds. It acts as an emulsifier as well as a way to maintain moisture in the meat. STPP is generally regarded as safe (GRAS) by the FDA.
Since this substance is stable and only slightly toxic, it does not need extra care and attention. It should be stored in a cool, dry area and kept sealed so that it doesn’t interact with anything in the air. It may create mild irritation of the skin or eyes, and it is only harmful if ingested in large quantities.