Hydrogen Peroxide Uses in Agriculture

Hydrogen Peroxide Uses in AgricultureIn recent years, many new agricultural applications for hydrogen peroxide have emerged, from aquaculture to animal husbandry and even in combatting certain plant pathogens and improving crop yields.

Livestock and Poultry Uses of H2O2

In many parts of the US farmers are using hydrogen peroxide in specialized drinking water delivery systems for livestock and poultry, leading to lower incidences of disease, increased milk and egg production and greatly reducing the need for antibiotics in animal stock.

Healing Damaged and Diseased Crops with Hydrogen Peroxide

Another development in H2O2 use in agriculture is in the fields themselves. Farmers have been experimenting with using hydrogen peroxide foliar sprays on crops to reduce fungal diseases and improve crop viability in the early stages of plant growth.

In one specific case, a farmer whose corn crop was destroyed by hailstones sprayed a hydrogen peroxide foliar spray on the broken plants rather than replant as all the surrounding farmers had, and experienced a full recovery of the crop within a few weeks without any replanting.

Additionally, in recent years work has been done to determine the efficacy of hydrogen peroxide in fighting the fungus which attacks banana trees.  In these applications, hydrogen peroxide and a form of molasses are sprayed on the underside of the banana tree leaves in order to apply the peroxide directly to the affected areas of the plants.  This work is ongoing in places like the Philippine Islands, and other tropical banana growing locations worldwide.


Hydrogen Peroxide and Poultry

In the area of poultry health it is noted that the famous “bird man of Alcatraz” was using hydrogen peroxide to achieve his ‘miraculous’ healing of sick and injured birds. Many poultry farmers are discovering the benefit of adding small amounts of hydrogen peroxide to the watering systems for their birds.

Framers who have supplied poultry flocks with hydrogen peroxide in drinking water in specialized delivery systems which carefully regulate the amount of peroxide in the water have reported reduced incidence of in-flock predation (pecking disorder), healthier birds and increased egg production in laying hens.

Hydrogen Peroxide in Aquaculture Approved by FDA in 2007

In 2007 the FDA approved a new product, 35% PEROX-AID® (Eka Chemicals, Marietta, Georgia) for control of mortality in (1) freshwater-reared finfish eggs due to saprolegniasis (a common water mold), (2) freshwater-reared salmonids due to bacterial gill disease (Flavobacterium branchiophilum), and (3) freshwater-reared coolwater finfish and channel catfish due to external columnaris (Flavobacterium columnare) disease.   The main and active ingredient in this product is 35% food grade hydrogen peroxide.


Resources:

Essential Waters Solutions, Inc. (Home of Oxy Blast) – Hydrogen Peroxide for Agricultural Uses: http://www.essentialwater.net/oxy-blast-brochure

Use of Hydrogen Peroxide in Finfish Aquaculture: http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/fa157


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