It is sometimes hard to believe that such a tiny chemical compound such as sodium chloride (salt) plays an important role in our everyday lives. Salt, or salt –derived products are omnipresent in today’s material world. Not only does it exist in nature, but also in the very cells of our bodies. Due to its chemical and physical properties, there are 14,000 uses of salt that help enhance our quality of life.
Salt has numerous uses such as in food, for winter road safety, for feeding animals and agriculture, for softening hard water, as well as therapeutic and cosmetic uses.
The history of the use of salt goes back to the Neolithic times, where it was bartered for gold and used as a part of rituals and traditions in many cultures. Salt’s economic and military significance not only helped build partnerships but sparked reason for combat as well. The Romans in Medieval Europe used to be partly paid with salt, which was called salarium, where the word salary was derived from. Salt has partaken in historic events such as the building of the Erie Canal, the French Revolution and the force behind India’s fight for independence from the British reign.