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Administrative data

Key value for chemical safety assessment

Additional information

Oxalates can be assimilated to oxalic acid. Four in vitro genotoxicity studies were reported, no in vivo studies were performed. The results are summarized in the following table.

Study references

Study type




Ames test




Ames test




Chromosome aberration



NON KEY_1991_lit_Ono




Two key studies were selected concerning gene mutation (Ames test), as the studies complement eachother. The study by Ishidate et al (1984) was performed with six different strains of Salmonella typhimurium, but does not provide data on a positive control, whereas the study by Haworth et al (1983) was performed with four strans of Salmonella, but with a positive control. Both studies show oxalic acid does not have genotoxic properties in the Ames test, with and without metabolic activation. In the chromosome aberration assay oxalic acid was only tested without metabolic activation, and did not show genotoxic properties. Additionally, oxalic acid was tested in the umu-test, in which induction of DNA-repair can be detected. In this test, oxalic acid was also negative.

In assessing the hazard of oxalic acid, it should be kept in mind that oxalic acid is a natural substance which is present in various food substances, and in this way is consumed by the general population daily. From Gold et al (2001), the following table was derived, in which the average daily consumption of oxalic acid containing food is summarized. A total average daily consumption of 68.4 mg oxalic acid can be calculated from this table.

Food substance (average daily consumption)

Average daily oxalic acid consumption

Coffee (500 mL)

25.2 mg

Carrot (boiled, 12.1 g)

22.7 mg

Tea (60.2 mL)

6.67 mg

Chocolate (cocoa solids, 3.34 g)

3.91 mg

Tomato (88.7 g)

3.24 mg

Celery (7.95 g)

1.39 mg

Potato (54.9 g)

1.26 mg

Corn (33.8 g)

1.12 mg

Apple (32.0 g)

704 µg

(10.5 g)

651 µg

Lettuce (14.9 g)

447 µg

Broccoli (6.71 g)

268 µg

Strawberry (4.38 g)

261 µg

Cabbage (boiled, 12.9 g)

155 µg

Grapes (11 g)

138 µg

Cucumber (raw flesh, 11.8 g)

118 µg

Peach (canned, 9.58 g)

115 µg

Onions (green, cooked, 137 mg)

31.5 µg

Short description of key information:
Genetic toxicity in vitro:
Ames test: negative
Chromosome aberration test: negative

Endpoint Conclusion: No adverse effect observed (negative)

Justification for classification or non-classification

The information regarding the potassium hydrogen oxalate has been provided by read-across from oxalic acid. Based upon the standard classification criteria (Commission Directive 2001/59/EC of August 2001), oxalic acid does not have to be classified as genotoxic..