Seeking to increase yield and eliminate diseases, farmers in Vietnam feed their plants with Oligochitosan and Oligoalginate, substances that come from irradiated natural polymers.
Oligochitosan is a yellow liquid that is produced at the Viet Nam Atomic Energy Institute and its origin comes from shrimp shell, while Oligoalginate comes from algae. These natural polymers in particular are subjected to precise doses of radiation in order to cause changes in their molecular structure, in order to obtain an improvement in the properties of plants. The products resulting from this treatment are not toxic or radioactive and are biodegradable.
Oligochitosan has made it possible to almost completely eliminate toxic fungicides from the country's agriculture, said Nguyen Quoc Hien of the Vinatom Research and Development Center for Radiation Technology. “Oligochitosan helps protect plants from fungal and bacterial infections, as well as helps prevent diseases. Also, it has helped stop the spread of the Tobacco Mosaic Virus, which causes a disease that can affect more than 350 plant species, not just tobacco plants.”
On the other hand, plants treated with Oligoalginate have shown much faster growth and up to 56% larger than other untreated plants, Hien said. Just one drop dissolved in a liter of water is enough for use on plants in order to prevent diseases and increase growth rate.
Clearly the large-scale use of these non-toxic compounds, which do not leave harmful residues, represents a significant improvement for consumers and opens up a number of possibilities for the country's agricultural exports. Oligochitosan can even be used to extend the life of various fruits such as Mangoes or Oranges, keeping them in optimal conditions for long periods of time for their final consumption. Oligochitosan, as well as its associated products, which are manufactured based on the same polymer but with the addition of particles before being irradiated, are used in a wide range of applications. For example, it can be added to the feed of fish, chickens and shrimp in order to improve their immune system, their chances of survival and increase their weight. Also, to disinfect water in aquaculture.
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