Rice close-up shot of the background

Increasing Rice Yields

The Helena Chemical Company is a leading provider of crop production and crop protection products to the agriculture community in the United States and worldwide. Headquartered in Collierville, Tennessee, the company has been in the business for more than 50 years and has been working on product development and providing research services for more than eight years.

There was a significant effect on yield in this study in treated plots versus the most common practice base
fertilizer treatment, with the BiOWiSHTM treatment having the highest yield.

Continue reading “Increasing Rice Yields”

Corn growing in field

Increasing Yields With Biotechnology

The Helena Chemical Company is a leading provider of crop production and crop protection products to the agriculture community in the United States and worldwide. Headquartered in Collierville, Tennessee, the company has been in the business for more than 50 years and has been working on product development and providing research services for more than eight years.

The results of the research study showed that the corn with BiOWiSHTM treatment had the highest ear length and diameter, resulting in the highest biomass yield than any other group.

Continue reading “Increasing Yields With Biotechnology”

sparkling pool water

Stop Draining Your Pool

Keep Pools Full and Save Water

With Bio-Active’s All-Natural Cyanuric Acid Reducer

Water, water everywhere and not a drop to spare. If you are a pool owner or pool and spa professional, this sing-song rhyme likely hits home for you. Cyanuric Acid (CYA) buildup has become a cause of concern for many pool owners, and it is virtually unavoidable. CYA is added to Chlorine to stabilize it and keep it from dissipating into gas within a matter of hours in the sun. Unfortunately, Chlorine does eventually evaporate or is used up in sanitizing your pool, leaving accumulating CYA in your pool as you replace the chlorine. As CYA builds up over 100 parts per million (ppm), the Chlorine becomes less effective, causing many people to have to maintain higher than normal chlorine in their pools or resort to other expensive and harsh water treatment products to maintain clear water.

Until Bio-Active entered the market, the most effective way to reduce Cyanuric Acid buildup was to drain part or all of your pool water. This lead to water waste, CYA pollutants in the water ways, and expensive pumping, re-filling and chemical balancing costs.

Bio-Active Cyanuric Acid Reducer positively impacts the environment, and your wallet, in 3 ways:

  1. The product works with your current pool water so there is no need to drain the pool. It preserves your water supply, which means pool owners save the cost of pumping out the old water and the cost of refilling their pool with new water. If you live in a state with water restrictions, Cyanuric Acid Reducer can also help you avoid water and sewage violation fines.
  2. Bio-Active’s Cyanuric Acid Reducer decreases your need for excess chemicals. As CYA increases, its bond with Chlorine strengthens. At this point, the Chlorine cannot oxidize and sanitize waste material at the correct rate. This prevents the Chlorine from doing its job as a sanitizer. Often pool owners and managers will have to keep adding Chlorine until it reaches unsafe levels, commonly known as Chlorine lock. Excess Chlorine in the pool causes burning feelings, skin irritations, and other harmful effects to the pool and environment. Cyanuric Acid Reducer reduces the amount of Chlorine you will need to add to your pool for it to be effective. When you maintain your CYA levels, keeping sparkling clear pool water is much easier.
  3. After pumping your pool, the water and CYA have to go somewhere. The drainage eventually enters the water ways where CYA and other chemicals pollute the water. Bio-Active is unique in that it employs an all-natural biotechnology that speeds up natural processes. In other words, it isn’t a pollutant and it reverses the effects of chemical pollution.

“We have been searching for a solution to the Cyanuric Acid build-up problem for decades,” said Jose Torres, a representative from Bio-Active. “Cyanuric Acid Reducer really is a miracle formula!”

Bio-Active’s Cyanuric Acid Reducer has been on the market for about a year and is starting to generate excitement in the pool industry. In fact, in 2015 it won Leslie’s Pool Supplies’ Vendor of the Year Award for being the most innovative new product.

Though innovative and new to the market, Cyanuric Acid Reducer is an all-natural product that speeds up the processes that already exist in nature. Cyanuric Acid Reducer disintegrates CYA at the molecular level. It is non-toxic with no adverse effects to your pool and is completely biodegradable. The proprietary blend of micro-organisms and dextrose are designed with a natural feedback loop and, if pools are in the proper condition, will reduce CYA down to recommended levels and then stop working. For pools with CYA of 200ppm or higher, this may require more than one dose.

According to Torres, Bio-Active is making a concerted effort to educate pool owners and professionals on balanced chemistry. “There are two problems we see almost daily,” Torres explains. “First, many testing kits do not accurately test Cyanuric Acid over 100 ppm. Often, pools will reach 200 or even 300 ppm and pool managers won’t know because their testing kits only go up to 100.” This can cause an issue because pools need a second or even third dose of Bio-Active before testing kits see an improvement.

“The other issue,” Torres continues, “is that the industry is still trying to understand biotechnology.” Owners and managers often continue adding additional chemical to the pool during the dosing process. This causes a problem because the microorganisms are meant to work within a specific chemistry and their effectiveness diminishes when additional chemicals are present to interfere with the processes.

Even with these challenges, Bio-Active is gaining momentum and carving its space within the market. The all-natural, safe, and economical product is the first of its kind in the pool and spa industry. If you are interested in reducing your pool’s CYA with Bio-Active’s Cyanuric Acid Reducer, it can be found at most major pool retailers. More information is available at bioactivenow.com.

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landfill with garbage

Garbage and Its Odor

What is Hajj?

Travelling to different areas of the world can expose travellers to unforeseen hazards. Every year, Muslims flock to Saudi Arabia for their annual pilgrimage, Hajj. They travel to Mecca, Saudi Arabia, to take part in Islam’s traditional sacred journey.  Hajj is known as one of the world’s largest gatherings, will millions in attendance.  Hajj includes five days of prayer, going from the Masjid Al Haram complex to the hills of Mina. One of the five pillars of Islam, Hajj must be undertaken by every able-bodied Muslim with the wherewithal at least once during his or her lifetime. There are many stops on the pilgrimage, which culminates in a return to Mecca for a farewell Tawaf or circling ritual.

Who travels to Hajj?

Muslims come from all over the world to attend Hajj. The countries they travel from include Africa, Asia, Europe, America and South America. All of these travelers arrive in Saudi Arabia from different environments, sometimes carrying with them germs and viruses from their originating country. The stops on the Hajj journey are congested. If you have not been, can you imagine hundreds of thousands of people travelling the same roads in a small area?

Millions of people in one small area of the world

Unfortunately, there is not enough infrastructure along the way to support the massive influx of people that travel to Mecca at the same time. The Saudis spend large amounts of money to support Hajj, including building a massive $1.2 billion air-conditioned bridge in one gathering place, but the masses of pilgrims cause logistical nightmares that are difficult to solve.  The lack of infrastructure and space (Mecca is a small town) with so many people congregating in the same place yearly poses an environmental hazard caused by the generation of mounds and mounds of garbage.

Heat and garbage mix to create unwelcome odors

To complicate the odor and trash removal problem, Saudi Arabia has yearly average temperatures of 18° Celcius, with temperatures regularly reaching between 45° – 54° Celcius in the summer. The heat becomes intense after sunrise and can drop to become surprisingly cool after sunset. Hot weather quickly brings out the worst in odors, especially trash from human food.  With three million people in close proximity eating several times a day, the trash from food piles up in the garbage bins, bakes in the hot sun, and begins to overflow. And stink.

Large garbage trucks are available and waiting to remove the garbage from the bins, but they cannot get into these spaces that are congested with pilgrims. The religious travelers throw trash into big bins and since it cannot be removed promptly, it causes odors. The trash attracts flies.

To elaborate, large garbage trucks are used at the end of the five days. The infrastructure has 1400 small compactor units distributed throughout the area of Mina. Garbage bags are dumped into these and the compactors crush them. At the bottom of these, liquid leaches out and generates gases such as hydrogen sulphide and ammonia. These have noxious odours.

Flies can spread diseases very quickly

Garbage in the hot sun causes horrific odors, but the odors are not the only problem. The main difficulty is the flies. Flies are attracted to odors and cause environmental hazards. With masses of people in Mecca for Hajj, an environment is created where disease can transfer from one person to another person quickly. The flies are the conduit of bacteria and disease, causing potential health hazards by how fast they can transmit diseases.

According to Penn State University College of Agricultural Sciences in Pennsylvania, USA, “Flies are not the neatest of insects. They visit such places as dumps, sewers, and garbage heaps. They feed on fecal matter, discharges from wounds and sores, sputum, and all sorts of moist decaying matter such as spoiled fish, eggs and meat.” Furthermore, “Flies are strongly suspected of transmitting at least 65 diseases to humans, including typhoid fever, dysentery, cholera, poliomyelitis, yaws, anthrax, tularemia, leprosy and tuberculosis. Flies regurgitate and excrete wherever they come to rest and thereby mechanically transmit disease organisms.”

Finding safe solutions for travelers to Mecca

In 2014, Gulf Scientific Gateway of Qatar, a BiOWiSHTM Technologies Distributor in the Middle East, started working with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to solve the odor problem as well as other environmental issues occuring in the region.  The biotechnology company, BiOWiSH Technologies, headquartered in Cincinnati, Ohio, USA, developed the new product that solved the problem. BiOWiSHTM products consist of mixtures of naturally occurring (not genetically modified) microorganisms.  This unique mixture of microorganisms and bio-chemicals creates products that generate significant performance across a broad range of applications, including odor control.

Gulf Scientific Gateway decided to test one of the products to control the odor. The BiOWiSHTM product being tested is 100% natural and safe for both environment and people, so it poses no adverse threat to the health of the people coming to Hajj. According to Mohammad Al Sada, Chairman of Gulf Scientific Gateway, they decided to test it with the Saudi authorities before the Hajj and it worked well. It only took a week to approve it, and then the Saudis submitted an order to cover almost 30% of the Hajj places.

Dr Azahar Iqbal, Managing Director of Gulf Scientific Gateway, told us, “In 2014, we sprayed 450 small compactors that were close to a hospital in Mina and significantly reduced the odor levels. As a result the use of pesticides was reduced considerably according to the Hajj operations management team. They also noticed a significant reduction in medicines given out by the Kingdom for coughs and infections. As a result in 2015 the operations team agreed to cover the whole area through 160 large compactors that posed greater odor related issues and due to complexities in deployment of staff it was agreed to work in this manner. The results were excellent.”

Mohammad Al Sada said, “Mecca and Saudi Arabia recognize the odor problem and don’t want to permit this problematic environment to occur at anytime, especially during Hajj.  They needed quick solutions to kill the smell, and then when you kill the smell, the flies are gone. The Saudi Authorities are very cautious in choosing the right product to implement, so the testing we did before Hajj was important.”

The product is supplied as a powder which is then mixed with water at a particular ratio, sprayed onto the waste and waste-related areas. It does not require a professional team to do the mixing or spraying of the product, which keeps the costs of using it lower as well.  Mohammad said, “The product is easy to use and to apply. The pricing for the product is very competitive as compared to chemicals so it was an easy choice.”

Using natural products to solve global environmental issues

A new breed of biotechnology companies around the world are working to develop natural, chemical-free solutions that solve environmental problems, BiOWiSHTM being one of them.

BiOWiSHTM products have been found to increase food production, clean up the environment, and improve human and animal health. For example, BiOWiSHTM Odor has been tested and found to remove odors, such as hydrogen sulphide and mercaptans (rotten egg smells), amines (fishy smells), ammonia, and a wide range of other noxious odors.

Rod Vautier, Vice President of BiOWiSHTM  Technologies said, “BiOWiSHTM Odor has been used at the Hajj in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in 2014 and again in 2015. We expect to continue working with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in 2016 through our distributor, Gulf Scientific Gateway.  We are also hoping to advance our agricultural and water treatment products in Saudi Arabia as well as in the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Pakistan and Jordan.”