Super-Wetters for Efficient Plant Protection

“Zero hunger” is number two of the United Nations’ sustainable development goals, with the aim of achieving food security and improved nutrition, while promoting sustainable agriculture. Along with food security goes the need for more productivity. According to the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations, we will have to have raised food production by 70% to feed the increased world population by 2050.

Responsible Plant Protection

Reaching “zero hunger” is a mammoth task that needs to be tackled on many levels. One is to find new and responsible ways for plant protection. According to a recent study, between 20% and 30% of global crop yields are lost each year to pathogens and pests1.

As governments around the globe aim to minimize the amount of pesticides used in farming, a ready solution is to improve the formulation efficiency of plant protection products.

1 “The global burden of pathogens and pests on major food crops” by Serge Savary et al., nature ecology & evolution, 2019

Wetting Agents: Formulating Efficiency

WACKER’s silicone polyether wetting and super-wetting agents help to minimize the amount of active ingredients needed for plant protection. Plant protection products without wetting agents tend to form beads on the plants. These beads cover only a small area on the plant and roll off easily before forming a film. Formulations with WACKER wetting agents have low surface tension and spread out on the plant: one bead covers the whole leaf, distributing the active ingredients evenly.

Super-Wetters: When a Drop Makes a Huge Difference

WACKER super-wetters even go one step further: the trisiloxane surfactants dramatically decrease surface tension – at very low concentrations. The addition of just 0.1% increases the wetting capacity by over 800%.

Evaluation of PE wetting after 2 minutes (A = 10 mm, B = 91 mm)
(Calculation: (B-A) / A x 100 = % wetting)

Due to their ultra-low static surface tension, WACKER trisiloxane surfactants display exceptional spreading characteristics.

Superior Spray Coverage Allows Reduction of Active Ingredients

In plant protection products, WACKER super-wetters deliver superior spray coverage and better targeting, helping to minimize the amount of pesticide needed. While this is just a tiny contribution towards the “zero hunger” initiative, it can make a big difference when crops are acutely threatened by pests.

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