New Pesticide Could End Chemical Pesticides

An all-natural, mushroom-based insecticide could put an end to harmful chemical pesticides.

Mycologist Paul Stamets has developed the “most disruptive technology the pesticide industry has ever witnessed.”

He patented two insecticides in 2006 using special mushrooms he developed. The first for carpenter ants, fire ants and termites, and the second for 200,000 other types of insects.

Normally mushroom spores repel insects. However, Stamets’ mushrooms attract the insects to eat them before they sporulate. Next, they sporulate and sprout inside of them, through the insects’ bodies. The approach is not toxic to humans, pollinators, fish, birds or any other non-targeted animal.

“This is the most disruptive technology — I’ve been told by executives of the pesticide industry — that they have ever witnessed,” Stamets said in a Ted Talk. “It could totally revamp the pesticide industry.”

One not-so-small hurdle Stamets faces? His patents have yet to be approved by the FDA. However, many are confident that the products will revolutionize the pesticides market and prevent the environment from being harmed by toxic pesticides.