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Propionic Acid. A low-molecular-weight fatty acid (q.v.), C2H5COOH, that forms the base of propionates (q.v.) which act as mold (q.v.) and rope (q.v.) growth inhibitors or retardants when incorporated in baked foods. The acid itself finds use as a mold inhibitor by being applied as an aerosol (q.v.) to the surface of baked products within an enclosed cooling tunnel (q.v.).