Practice Problem 1

Root beer hasn't tasted the same since the use of sassafras oil as a food additive was outlawed because sassafras oil is 80% safrole, which has been shown to cause cancer in rats and mice. Identify the functional groups in the structure of safrole.


Safrole is an aromatic compound because it contains a benzene ring. It is also an alkene because it contains a C=C double bond. The most difficult functional group to recognize in this molecule might be the two ether linkages (O).