When were pesticides first used in agriculture

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Since before 2500 B.C.E., humans have used pesticides to prevent damage to their crops. The first known pesticide was elemental sulfur dusting used in Sumeria about 4,500 years ago.

When did people start using pesticides?

There was thus a great incentive to find ways of overcoming the problems caused by pests and diseases. The first recorded use of insecticides is about 4500 years ago by Sumerians who used sulphur compounds to control insects and mites, whilst about 3200 years ago the Chinese were using mercury and arsenical compounds for controlling body lice4.

When did pesticides start to grow the US?

The use of synthetic pesticides in the US began in the 1930s and became widespread after World War II. By 1950, pesticide was found to increase farm yield far beyond pre-World War II levels. Farmers depend heavily on synthetic pesticides to control insects in their crops. Today, it is one of the most commonly used methods in controlling insects.

When was DDT first being used?

Dichloro-diphenyl-trichloroethane, popularly referred to as DDT, is an organochlorine that was first synthesized in 1874. It was first used as a pesticide in the 1940s to control mosquitos from spreading malaria among soldiers in the Second World War. DDT was effective in preventing malaria and other insect-borne human diseases.

When were anesthetics first used?

When were anesthetics first used? With Dr. Morton’s tenacity driven by enthusiasm and discovery, he and renowned surgeon at Massachusetts General Hospital, John Collins Warren (1778-1856) made history on October 16, 1846 with the first successful surgical procedure performed with anesthesia. Also to know, What did they use before anesthesia?

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When did pesticides start being used in agriculture?

The use of synthetic pesticides in the US began in the 1930s and became widespread after World War II. By 1950, pesticide was found to increase farm yield far beyond pre-World War II levels. Farmers depend heavily on synthetic pesticides to control insects in their crops.


When were pesticide first used?

Pesticides have been used by humankind for centuries. Their use was recorded as early as the eighth century BC when the application of fungicides was documented in Homeric poems (Mason, 1928; McCallan, 1967).


What did farmers use before pesticides?

To combat insects, many of which were identical to today’s insect pests, the ancient agriculturalists relied almost entirely on the use of natural products and preparations derived from them. Extracts of lupine flowers or wild cucumber were widely used against a variety of pests, according to several writers.


What were the first pesticides on Earth?

The first known pesticide was elemental sulfur dusting used in ancient Sumer about 4,500 years ago in ancient Mesopotamia. The Rigveda, which is about 4,000 years old, mentions the use of poisonous plants for pest control.


Who were the first people to utilize pesticides?

Perhaps the first recorded use of pesticide was around 1550 B.C., when Egyptians used unspecified chemicals to drive fleas from homes.


Who created the first pesticides?

The first recorded use of insecticides is about 4500 years ago by Sumerians who used sulphur compounds to control insects and mites, whilst about 3200 years ago the Chinese were using mercury and arsenical compounds for controlling body lice4.


What pesticides were used in the 1930s?

Arsenicals, 80-90 million pounds.Sulfur, 73 million pounds.Kerosene, 10 million gallons.Mineral Oil Emulsion, 40 million pounds.Naphthalene and paradichlorobenzene, 21 million pounds.Pyrethrum, 10 million pounds.Nicotine sulphate, 2 million pounds.Rotenone, 1.5 million pounds.


How did medieval farmers deal with pests?

Pesticides and Insecticides Medieval farmers and agronomists had developed a large number of recipes to pulverize, fumigate or pour on crops to cure their diseases and to repel pests. Their repellents were often plant-based products, but mixtures with sulfur, urine and vinegar were common.


When did the pest start?

Since the beginning of time, pest control has been vital to the health and longevity of human existence. Records of natural pest control date back to 2500 BC, thousands of years after the beginning of agriculture began in the Fertile Crescent of Mesopotamia.


Why was DDT used in the early 1900s?

It was initially used with great effect to combat malaria, typhus, and the other insect-borne human diseases among both military and civilian populations. It also was effective for insect control in crop and livestock production, institutions, homes, and gardens.


What was the first organic insecticide?

DDTDDT quickly became the new “wonder insecticide” and was credited with saving thousands of human lives in World War II by killing typhus-carrying lice and malaria-carrying mosquitoes. It was the first “organic” chemical insecticide, meaning that it is a carbon-based molecule.


When did pesticides first appear?

Our knowledge of the earliest forms of pest control, after the development of agriculture approximately 10,000 years ago, is limited to the evidence that has survived to the present day. Nevertheless, we know that more than 4,500 years ago the Sumerians were using sulphur compounds to control insects and mites, that 3,200 years ago the Chinese were using insecticides derived from plants and, by 2,500 years ago, had appreciated the role of natural enemies and the value of adjusting crop-planting times to avoid pest outbreaks, and that the Greeks and Romans understood the use of fumigants, mosquito nets, granaries on stilts, sticky bands on trees and pesticidal sprays and ointments – although throughout this period and long beyond, such sophisticated practices were accompanied by widespread reliance on offerings to the gods and other superstitions.


How many pesticides were used in the 1960s?

By the 1960s, the original two-pest species had become eight. There were, on average, twenty-eight applications of insecticide per year (Flint and van den Bosch, 1981). On a broader scale, changes in the overall pattern of weed infestation can be seen as an example of the outbreak of secondary pests.


Why are pesticides toxic?

Chemical pesticides are generally intended for particular pests at a particular site, nevertheless, problems arise because they are usually toxic to a broader range of organisms and also persist in the environment. The problem is made more difficult with chlorinated hydrocarbons especially, because of their susceptibility to biomagnification: an increasing concentration of insecticide in organisms at higher trophic levels, as a result of a repeated cycle of concentration of the insecticide in particular tissues in a lower trophic level, consumption by the trophic level above, further concentration, further consumption, and so on, until top predators which were never intended as targets, suffer extraordinary high doses. Figure 2 shows the process of biomagnification in the context of DDT. The DDT concentration is in parts per million. As the trophic level increases in a food chain, the amount of toxic build up increases. The x represent the amount of toxic build up accumulating as the trophic level increases. Toxins build up in organism’s fat and tissue. Predators accumulate higher toxins than prey.


Why are pesticides important?

Pesticides have provided distinct benefits and, until now, the pesticide manufacturers have managed, broadly speaking, to keep at least one step ahead of the pests. Pesticides themselves are being used with increasing care. Many are now used as an integral part of a more varied armoury. In spite of the steadily rising costs of pesticides – the result of increasing complexity (rising development and production costs) and of oil price rises, the cost/benefit ratio for the individual facility has remained in favour of pesticide use.


How to solve pesticide resistance?

One answer to the problem of pesticide resistance is to develop strategies of ‘resistance management’. This consists of two approaches; reduce the frequency with which a particular pesticide is used, thus depriving the pest of a series of generations over which resistance may evolve. This may be done by using a range of pesticides in a repeated sequence, especially when they have different target sites or modes of action. The second strategy is to ensure that pesticides are applied at a concentration high enough to kill individuals heterozygous for the resistance gene, since this is where all the resistance genes are likely to reside when resistance is rare.


How does resistance to pesticides evolve?

The evolution of pesticide resistance is simply natural selection occurring more rapidly than usual and on a particular obvious character. Within a large population subjected to a pesticide, one or a few individuals may be unusually resistant (perhaps because they posses an enzyme that can detoxify the pesticide). If such individuals exist at the outset, resistance can begin to spread in the population immediately; if they arise subsequently by mutation, then there will be a lag in the evolutionary response before this chance event occurs. In either case, the resistant individuals have an improved chance of surviving and breeding and, if the pesticide is applied repeatedly, each successive generation will contain a larger proportion of resistant individuals (figure 3).


What were the Chinese using to control insects?

The Chinese continued to develop their pest-control technology and, by AD 300, they were using biological controls, establishing nests of ants in citrus orchards to control caterpillars and large boring beetles. Meanwhile, the Europeans, after the fall of the Roman Empire, relied increasingly on religious faith rather than biological knowledge. This decline was reversed by the Renaissance, and the 17th century saw an awakening of interest in biological control and the rediscovery and/or introduction into Europe of a variety of natural pesticides (figure 1).


When were pesticides first used?

The first known pesticide was elemental sulfur dusting used in ancient Sumer about 4,500 years ago in ancient Mesopotamia. The Rigveda, which is about 4,000 years old, mentions the use of poisonous plants for pest control.


When did the US start using pesticides?

War implemented tariffs that stimulated the growth of the chemical industry in the U.S., which made chemistry a prestigious occupation as this industry expanded and became profitable. Money and ideas flowed back from Europe after the U.S. entered WWI, changing the way Americans interacted with themselves and nature, and the industrialization of war hastened the industrialization of pest control. Some sources consider the 1940s and 1950s to have been the start of the “pesticide era.” Although the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency was established in 1970 and amendments to the pesticide law in 1972, pesticide use has increased 50-fold since 1950 and 2.3 million tonnes (2.5 million short tons) of industrial pesticides are now used each year. Seventy-five percent of all pesticides in the world are used in developed countries, but use in developing countries is increasing. A study of USA pesticide use trends through 1997 was published in 2003 by the National Science Foundation’s Center for Integrated Pest Management.


How many people die from pesticides in the world?

The World Health Organization and the UN Environment Programme estimate that 3 million agricultural workers in the developing world experience severe poisoning from pesticides each year, resulting in 18,000 deaths. According to one study, as many as 25 million workers in developing countries may suffer mild pesticide poisoning yearly. Other occupational exposures besides agricultural workers, including pet groomers, groundskeepers, and fumigators, may also put individuals at risk of health effects from pesticides.


What percentage of pesticide deaths occur in developing countries?

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends limiting exposure of children to pesticides and using safer alternatives: Owing to inadequate regulation and safety precautions, 99% of pesticide-related deaths occur in developing countries that account for only 25% of pesticide usage.


How do pesticides affect the body?

Pesticides may cause acute and delayed health effects in people who are exposed. Pesticide exposure can cause a variety of adverse health effects, ranging from simple irritation of the skin and eyes to more severe effects such as affecting the nervous system, hearing, mimicking hormones causing reproductive problems, and also causing cancer. A 2007 systematic review found that “most studies on non-Hodgkin lymphoma and leukemia showed positive associations with pesticide exposure” and thus concluded that cosmetic use of pesticides should be decreased. There is substantial evidence of associations between organophosphate insecticide exposures and neurobehavioral alterations. Limited evidence also exists for other negative outcomes from pesticide exposure including neurological, birth defects, and fetal death.


How do pesticides work?

Pesticides are used to control organisms that are considered to be harmful, or pernicious to their surroundings. For example, they are used to kill mosquitoes that can transmit potentially deadly diseases like West Nile virus, yellow fever, and malaria. They can also kill bees, wasps or ants that can cause allergic reactions. Insecticides can protect animals from illnesses that can be caused by parasites such as fleas. Pesticides can prevent sickness in humans that could be caused by moldy food or diseased produce. Herbicides can be used to clear roadside weeds, trees, and brush. They can also kill invasive weeds that may cause environmental damage. Herbicides are commonly applied in ponds and lakes to control algae and plants such as water grasses that can interfere with activities like swimming and fishing and cause the water to look or smell unpleasant. Uncontrolled pests such as termites and mold can damage structures such as houses. Pesticides are used in grocery stores and food storage facilities to manage rodents and insects that infest food such as grain. Each use of a pesticide carries some associated risk. Proper pesticide use decreases these associated risks to a level deemed acceptable by pesticide regulatory agencies such as the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Pest Management Regulatory Agency (PMRA) of Canada.


How much pesticide was used in 2006?

In 2006 and 2007, the world used approximately 2.4 megatonnes (5.3 × 10 9 lb) of pesticides, with herbicides constituting the biggest part of the world pesticide use at 40%, followed by insecticides (17%) and fungicides (10%).


When were pesticides invented?

Contrary to what you might have thought, pesticides aren’t a recent invention. Already around 1000 B.C., Homer was using sulphur as a fungicide to combat mushrooms. Across civilizations and across time, we have used various substances (copper, sulphur, mercury salts) to combat things which could prevent bountiful harvests.


What was the first pesticide made of?

But the real use of pesticides took off with progress in mineral chemistry. In the 19th century, fungicides were made of copper sulphate or mercury. Insecticides were made of copper arsenite or lead arsenate. The 19th century also saw the first scientific studies on the use of chemical products in agriculture.


What was the first chemical used in agriculture?

The 19th century also saw the first scientific studies on the use of chemical products in agriculture. Work on arsenicals was performed in 1867 with Paris green, an impure form of copper arsenite. In the United States, it was used against potato beetles (little beetle that looks like this 🐞 but not quite the same), and in 1900 it was so common that legislation was passed regarding its use — likely the first piece of legislation related to pesticides in the world. 📄


What did Fritz Haber discover?

Just prior to World War I, the German chemist Fritz Haber discovered a method for cheaply producing large amounts of nitrogen that could then be used as a fertilizer. This helped to resolve a serious problem: how to increase agricultural yields and to ensure those yields. But Fritz Haber didn’t stop there. War led him and his team to begin developing much more toxic substances, like mustard gas. His research also led to industrial manufacturing of what would become a well-known pesticide: Zyklon B. It would be used during the 1930s in agriculture, and then, in the 1940s, in the gas chambers of the Shoah.


How did pesticides benefit the world?

In the 20th century, given rising demographic pressures and political instability, the question of how to produce food became paramount. At the time, the world population was around 1.6 billion, and scientists were already talking about the “peak” — they thought that the earth had reached its production limits.


Why did pesticides become more complex?

Pesticides became more complex in order to improve their efficiency, whether in terms of targeting a particular parasite or in terms of their functions.


What was the most widely used pesticide in the world?

Following World War II, DDT rapidly became the most widely used pesticide in the world, with success on the battlefield and on the farms, in fields and in houses, combatting insects and diseases (including malaria, typhus, and the bubonic plague).


What were the first chemicals used in pesticides?

The earliest documented chemical pesticide compounds were elements such as sulfur, heavy metals and salt.


What was the advance of pesticides?

The Advance of Pesticides Through the 20th Century . The primitive tools now had scientific reasoning to explain their efficacy and identify their chemical formulations, moving them from the realm of natural extracts to synthesized pesticides, and signaling the rise of the chemical pesticide revolution.


What are the most common forms of pest control?

The most common forms of chemical pest controls are pesticides, which are chemical or biological agents designed to deter, discourage, incapacitate, or kill a pest. Early pesticides included the use of botanicals and simple elements or compounds. Early Romans, for example, discovered that crushed olive pits could produce an oil called Amurea that was capable of killing pests. Subsequent scientific and cultural development led to the discovery and utilization of additional pesticide agents.


Why is sulfur used as a pesticide?

Applied as a liquid or powder, acidic solutions of sulfur discouraged the growth of molds. Even today, the use of sulfur as a pesticide persists in modern pest management. The heavy metal compounds were probably first employed as pesticides because of their high toxicity.


When was BHC first synthesized?

Many organochloride compounds, such as BHC and DDT, were first synthesized in the 1800s, but their properties as insecticides were not fully discovered and exploited until the late 1930s. BHC (Benzene hexachloride) was first produced by the English scientist Michael Faraday in 1825, but its properties as an insecticide were not identified until 1944. DDT (dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane) was first prepared by Othmar Ziedler, an Austrian chemist, in 1825, but the Swiss chemist Paul Hermann Müller did not discover DDT’s insecticidal properties until 1939 — a discovery that led to Müller’s award of the Nobel Prize in 1948.


What is the evolution of chemical pesticides?

The Evolution of Chemical Pesticides. Modern pest management and control is an increasingly diverse science with thousands of different management strategies. Synthetic chemical pesticides, which were first deployed during the World War II era, are a relatively new development in an epic battle against pests and parasites.


What did the Romans discover about pesticides?

Early Romans, for example, discovered that crushed olive pits could produce an oil called Amurea that was capable of killing pests. Subsequent scientific and cultural development led to the discovery and utilization of additional pesticide agents.


How many pesticides were used in the new age?

So, as the war ended, a new chemical age began, and farmers were the main reason for the new age. By 1952, there were almost 10,000 separate new pesticide products registered with the USDA under a brand new law. Then, as today, agriculture uses 75 percent of all pesticides. Between 1947 and 1949, pesticide companies invested $3.8 billion into expanding their production facilities. They were rewarded by huge profits.


What were the bugs that farmers were fighting?

Between army ants, grasshoppers, corn borers and a horde of other bugs, farmers in the Midwest were fighting a never-ending battle against insects. On the West Coast, orchard growers had been using arsenic compounds like Paris Green to keep insect s from destroying their crops, and they had gotten into trouble when arsenic residues showed up on apples and pears in the America, Britain and other countries. Agricultural groups had been fighting a running battle with muckrakers and reformers who wanted to place severe limits on the amount of pesticide residue that could be found on food.


Why was DDT used in the war?

The reason was DDT. The insect killer – or “insecticide” – had been discovered in 1939 and used extensively by the U.S. military during the war. So, it is no wonder that the postwar period saw the dawning of the chemical age in pesticides.


When was the dawning of the chemical age?

The Dawning of the Chemical Age for Pesticides during the 1940s


Who remembers the futility of trying to contol bugs without insecticides?

Farmers, in particular, took note and couldn’t wait to get their hands on the chemical. Diena Thieszen Schmidt remembers the futility of trying to contol bugs without insecticides. “We did everything we could think of,” she says. “We made noises at the end of the field. We smoked [set up smoke pots]. We tried everything to try to get rid of those army bugs.”


How was methane formulated?

The chemical was formulated by taking simple carbon-based molecules, like methane, stripping out one or more hydrogen atoms and replacing them with other compounds. Very quickly, chemists were developing new classes of chemicals to killed insects and weeds.


Which act requires full reporting of pesticides?

The Food Safety Act of 1989 gives the CDFA, and later the Department of Pesticide Regulation, clear statutory authority to require full reporting of agricultural pesticide use.


What did the Egyptians use for pest control?

Egyptians use hemlock and aconite for pest control.


What is the federal insecticide law?

Congress passes the Federal Insec- ticide Act, a labeling law focused on protecting consumers from inef- fective pesticides and deceptive labeling.


What is the first fumigant?

Tobacco (nicotine) is heated to con- trol insects. It’s the first fumigant.


What was the first insect growth regulator?

First insect growth regulator, methoprene, registered in the U.S.


When was pyrethrum invented?

Pyrethrum first used in the United States. “Pyrethrum Soap” was patented in 1884 by Austrian inventor Johann Zacherl, who made a fortune selling chrysanthemum-based insecticides.


Who discovered DDT?

Swiss chemist Paul Hermann Müller discovered the insecticidal action of DDT. The first cyclodine insecticide, it was used in the second half of World War II to control malaria and typhus among civilians and troops.


What is pesticide use?

There is substantial pesticide use in residential areas (25% of all pesticide use), including use for home, lawn and garden pests, ponds, turfgrass, and right-of-way areas. 1 Pesticides are regulated under Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act ( FIFRA) and the Food Quality Protection Act ( FQPA) and are enforced by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) at the federal level and undergo a tiered toxicological testing regime to ensure safety before products go onto the market (If label instructions are followed). 2,3


Do pesticides have toxicity?

However, the toxicity of pesticides varies widely (even among the same classes of pesticides) among organisms and with factors such as age or live stage. It is therefore imperative that applicators identify the potential pest (s) problem, determine if cultural, physical or biological controls are an option or if chemical controls are necessary, and then make an informed decision before purchasing and use occurs.


How were pesticides used in the past?

During the first period before the 1870s, pests were controlled by using various natural compounds. The first recorded use of insecticides was about 4500 years ago by Sumerians [8]. They used sulfur compounds to control insects and mites. About 3200 years ago, the Chinese used mercury and arsenical compounds to control body lice. There was no chemical industry, so all products used were derived directly from readily available animal, plant, or mineral sources. For example, volatile substances were often applied by “smoking”. The principle was to burn straw, chaff, hedge clippings, crabs, fish, dung, or other animal products, so that the smoke, preferably malodorous, could spread throughout the orchard, crop, or vineyard [8]. It was generally assumed that such smoke would eliminate blight or mildew. Smoke was also used against insects. People controlled weeds mainly by hand weeding, while various chemical methods were also reported [14]. Pyrethrum is obtained from the dried flowers of the chrysanthemum Cineraria folium, “pyrethrum daisies”, and has been used as an insecticide for over 2000 years.


Why are pesticides important?

It is generally accepted that pesticides play an important role in agricultural development because they can reduce the losses of agricultural products and improve the affordable yield and quality of food [2,3,4]. Because of the urgency to improve food production and control insect-borne diseases, the development of pesticides increased during World War II (1939-1945). Additionaly, from the 1940s onwards, the increased use of synthetic crop protection chemicals permitted a further increase in food production [1]. Moreover, worldwide pesticide production increased at a rate of about 11% per year, from 0.2 million tons in the 1950s to more than 5 million tons by 2000 [5]. Three billion kilograms of pesticides are used worldwide every year [6], while only 1% of total pesticides are effectively used to control insect pests on target plants [1]. The large amounts of remaining pesticides penetrate or reach non-target plants and environmental media. As a consequence, pesticide contamination has polluted the environment and caused negative impacts on human health [1,7].


What is the literature review of pesticides?

This literature review firstly provides basic scientific information about the agricultural development process, the historical perspective of pesticide usage, general types of pesticide in use, and the role of pesticides in agriculture. Specific focus is then put on pesticide behavior in the environment, climate change-related factors in pesticide use and its adverse effects on the natural environment. Finally this study provides a new direction for the application and management of pesticides.


How do pesticides help the environment?

In terms of public health, pesticides are used in daily life to kill pests, including mosquitoes, ticks, rats, and mice in houses, offices, malls, and streets. As a result, the immense burden of diseases caused by these vectors has been substantially reduced or eliminated [21,23,26]. Insecticides are often the most practical way to control insects that can spread deadly diseases such as malaria, possibly resulting in an estimated death count of 5000 deaths globally each day [17]. In addition, pesticides are indispensable in agricultural production. They have been used by farmers to control weeds and insects in agricultural cultivation, and remarkable increases in agricultural products have been reported as a result of pesticide use [1,27]. To cope with demographic growth, there has been a significant increase in agricultural yield since the beginning of the 20th century. Within one century, population growth increased from 1.5 billion in 1900 to about 6.1 billion in 2000, corresponding to a world population growth rate three times greater than during the entire history of humanity. Since 2003, the world’s population has increased by yet another billion, and given the current growth rates, it is projected to reach 9.4–10 billion by 2050 [5]. The increase in the world’s population in the 20th century could not have been possible without a parallel increase in food production. Although increases in food productivity have been due to several factors, including the use of chemicals, better plant varieties, and the use of machinery, pesticides have been an integral part of the process by reducing harvest losses caused by weeds, diseases, and insect pests [25]. About one-third of agricultural products are produced using pesticides. Without the use of pesticides, there would be a 78% loss of fruit production, a 54% loss of vegetable production, and a 32% loss of cereal production [27]. Therefore, pesticides play a critical role in reducing diseases and improving the increase in crop yields worldwide. Thus, they have made a significant contribution to alleviating hunger and providing access to an abundant supply of high-quality food.


What are the different types of pesticides?

Pesticides are classified by different classification terms such as chemical classes, functional groups, modes of action, and toxicity [20]. Firstly, pesticides are classified by different targets of pests, including fungicides, insecticides, herbicides, and rodenticides. For example, fungicides are used to kill fungi, insecticides are used to kill insects, while herbicides are used to kill weeds [21,22]. In terms of chemical classes, pesticides are classified into organic and inorganic ingredients. Inorganic pesticides include copper sulfate, ferrous sulfate, copper, lime, and sulfur. The ingredients of organic pesticides are more complicated [23]. Organic pesticides can be classified according to their chemical structure, such as chlorohydrocarbon insecticides, organophosphorus insecticides, carbamate insecticides, synthetic pyrethroid insecticides, metabolite and hormone analog herbicides, synthetic urea herbicides, triazine herbicides, benzimidazole nematocides, metaldehyde molluscicides, metal phosphide rodenticides, and D group vitamin-based rodenticides. Figure 1shows the summary of the agricultural use of each class of pesticide in China [24].


Why do pesticides bind to soil?

In contrast, a large amount of pesticides reaches the soil, resulting in severe soil pollution [51,52]. The sorption process is a phenomenon that binds pesticides to soil particles due to the attraction between chemical and soil particles [51,53,54,55]. In addition, adsorption isotherms can be obtained according to the standard batch equilibration method (OECD106, 2000) and used for the assessment of pesticide retention in the environmental media [56].


How do pesticides affect agriculture?

The increase in the world’s population in the 20th century could not have been possible without a parallel increase in food production. About one-third of agricultural products are produced depending on the application of pesticides. Without the use of pesticides, there would be a 78% loss of fruit production, a 54% loss of vegetable production, and a 32% loss of cereal production. Therefore, pesticides play a critical role in reducing diseases and increasing crop yi elds worldwide. Thus, it is essential to discuss the agricultural development process; the historical perspective, types and specific uses of pesticides; and pesticide behavior, its contamination, and adverse effects on the natural environment. The review study indicates that agricultural development has a long history in many places around the world. The history of pesticide use can be divided into three periods of time. Pesticides are classified by different classification terms such as chemical classes, functional groups, modes of action, and toxicity. Pesticides are used to kill pests and control weeds using chemical ingredients; hence, they can also be toxic to other organisms, including birds, fish, beneficial insects, and non-target plants, as well as air, water, soil, and crops. Moreover, pesticide contamination moves away from the target plants, resulting in environmental pollution. Such chemical residues impact human health through environmental and food contamination. In addition, climate change-related factors also impact on pesticide application and result in increased pesticide usage and pesticide pollution. Therefore, this review will provide the scientific information necessary for pesticide application and management in the future.


When did pesticides increase?

The total expenditures for pesticides increased tenfold between 1945 and 1972.


What was the golden age of pesticides?

The Golden Age of Pesticides. The 50s were the golden age of pesticides. But by the end of the 60s, the Golden Age had started to tarnish. In the 50s , new and amazing products were being discovered, quickly tested and introduced to farmers and the general public. In these early days, there were no downsides to pesticides.


How much did farmers lose from crop diseases in 1945?

According to the USDA in 1945, the average annual loss in farm income from pests and crop diseases was about $360 million [over $4 billion in today’s dollars]. Even if this figure is debatable – estimating the market value for crops never harvested is a tricky business – crop pests were worth controlling.


What were the controls placed on the number of acres farmers could plant?

In the 50s and 60s , controls were placed on the number of acres farmers could plant, not directly on the amounts of crops they could produce. So, the farmers took the worst land out of production and poured technology, including pesticides, into the remaining land to increase yields.


How much did fertilizer increase after the war?

Analysis of data right after the war indicated that every additional dollar spent on fertilizer or pesticides generated increased output of between $3 to $5, on average. It’s no wonder that farmers flocked to buy the new chemicals.


What percentage of cotton was treated with herbicides in 1952?

In 1952, 11 percent of the corn and 5 percent of the cotton acres were treated with herbicides. By 1982, these percentages had risen to 95 percent of the corn and 93 percent of the cotton.


Why was DDT used in World War 2?

DDT had been used effectively during World War II to kill the insects that carried malaria and typhus, saving the lives of thousands of GIs. In the 50s, very little was known about any problems with these chemical miracles.

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Overview


Costs

On the cost side of pesticide use there can be costs to the environment, costs to human health, as well as costs of the development and research of new pesticides.
Pesticides may cause acute and delayed health effects in people who are exposed. Pesticide exposure can cause a variety of adverse health effects, ran…


Definition

The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has defined pesticide as:
any substance or mixture of substances intended for preventing, destroying, or controlling any pest, including vectors of human or animal disease, unwanted species of plants or animals, causing harm during or otherwise interfering with the production, processing, storage, transport, or marketing of food, agricultural commodities, wood and wood products or animal feedstuffs, o…


History

Since before 2000 BC, humans have utilized pesticides to protect their crops. The first known pesticide was elemental sulfur dusting used in ancient Sumer about 4,500 years ago in ancient Mesopotamia. The Rigveda, which is about 4,000 years old, mentions the use of poisonous plants for pest control. By the 15th century, toxic chemicals such as arsenic, mercury, and lead were being applied to crops to kill pests. In the 17th century, nicotine sulfate was extracted from tobacco leav…


Uses

Pesticides are used to control organisms that are considered to be harmful, or pernicious to their surroundings. For example, they are used to kill mosquitoes that can transmit potentially deadly diseases like West Nile virus, yellow fever, and malaria. They can also kill bees, wasps or ants that can cause allergic reactions. Insecticides can protect animals from illnesses that can be caused by parasites such as fleas. Pesticides can prevent sickness in humans that could be caused by m…


Amount used

In 2006 and 2007, the world used approximately 2.4 megatonnes (5.3×10 lb) of pesticides, with herbicides constituting the biggest part of the world pesticide use at 40%, followed by insecticides (17%) and fungicides (10%). In 2006 and 2007 the U.S. used approximately 0.5 megatonnes (1.1×10 lb) of pesticides, accounting for 22% of the world total, including 857 million pounds (389 kt) of conventional pesticides, which are used in the agricultural sector (80% of conventional pes…


Benefits

Pesticides can save farmers’ money by preventing crop losses to insects and other pests; in the U.S., farmers get an estimated fourfold return on money they spend on pesticides. One study found that not using pesticides reduced crop yields by about 10%. Another study, conducted in 1999, found that a ban on pesticides in the United States may result in a rise of food prices, loss of jobs, and an increase in world hunger.


Resistance

The use of pesticides inherently entails the risk of resistance developing. Various techniques and procedures of pesticide application can slow the development of resistance, as can some natural features of the target population and surrounding environment.


#Episode 1


Pesticides, Tell Me A Little Bit About Yourselves


The Family Tree


Time Moves on


The Spread of Pesticides

  • At the end of the two world wars, nations were looking for ways to avoid similar conflicts, and hunger and food production were two extremely tricky subjects. A way had to be found to satisfy the nutritional needs of the entire planet. The developments that were applied to war were no longer needed for that purpose. And so they were redirected…towa…

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