Share This Story, Choose Your Platform!

Ozone for Grain Storage

The loss of grain in storage relating to or resulting from living things such as insects, pests, rodents, and fungi and form physical rather than biological such as temperature or moisture lead to global losses that exceed 80 million metric tons in grain storage. Most of the time, Aluminium Phosphide is used for fumigation, though it can be dangerous. Also, insects and pests have developed resistance to phosphine. Other fumigants such as carbonyl sulfide, ethyl formate, hydrogen cyanide, methyl iodide, and propylene oxide have high costs compared to phosphine (Singh and Sharma 2015). On the other hand, several studies have demonstrated that ozone is effective in treating the grain with the advantage of not affecting its quality when dose and exposure time is properly controlled.

Ozone as an alternative Fumigant for stored product insects and pests

Ozone has been successfully used as the best alternative fumigant against stored product insects. Various works on the usage of ozone as a greener alternative for commercial fumigants have been studied.

The effect of ozone fumigation in terms of concentration and exposure time on selected food grains and insects is summarized in the next table

TargetConcentration/exposure timeSignificant resultsReference
Adults of Callosobruchus maculates and C. Chinensis L0.25, 0.5, 1.0, 1.5 and 2 g/m3; 1, 3, 5 and 7 daysC. maculates – 100% at 1.0, 1.5 and 2.0 g/m3 for 7 days & C. Chinensis – 100% at all concentration(Gad et al.2021)
Adult, larva, pupa, and eggs of Callosobruchus maculatus500-1500 ppm;
Adults – 120 to 270 minutes;
Larvae – 540 to 1110 minutes;
Pupae – 480 to 1230 minutes;
Eggs – 660 and 1500 minutes
Adult – 100% at 150, 180, 240, and 270 minutes;
Larvae – 100 % at 540, 660, 870, 1110 minutes;
Pupae- 480, 570, 690, 990, 1230 minutes; Egg- 660 minutes
(Ravi Pandiselvam et al. 2019)
Tribolium castaneum,
Oryzaephilus surinamensis
Sitophilus zeamais
Sitophilus oryzae
200 ppm; 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 8, 10, and 12 hour assessed for 5 days100% – Sitophilus spp, O. Surinamensis.
90% – T. castaneum
(Xinyi, Subramanyam, and Li 2017)
Rhyzopertha dominica adults40.42 and 0.84 g/m3; 0.42 g/m3 – 36 hours, 0.84 g/m3 – 30 hours for 5 days99%(Subramanyam et al. 2017b)
Eupteryx Decemnotata120 and 595 ppm; 2 and 10 minutes120 ppm for 2 minutes- 33.88 to 71.90%
595 ppm for 10 minutes – 70.24 to 91.66%
(Kopacki et al. 2017)
Adult, larva, pupa, and eggs of Lasioderma serricorne (F)150, 250, 350, and 450 ppm;
Larva- 609.37, 544.90, 496.64 and 187.20 minutes
Pupae – 628.80, 581.64, 522.78, and 429.33 minutes
Adult – 745.33, 610.18, 544.98, and 422.98 minutes
99%(Anandakumar, Shubhashini, et al. 2016)
Adult, larva, and pupa of Stegobium paniceum L. (Drugstore beetle)150, 250 and 350 ppm; Adult – 50.8, 24.08, and 18.46 hours
Pupa – 10.95,7.93 and 6.42 hours
Larva – 3.84, 12.08, 10.5, and 9.34 hours.
100% – Adults and
99% – larva and pupa.
(Anandakumar, Singh, et al. 2016)
Ephestia castella– larva22 ppm; 24 hours100%(Husain et al. 2015)
Adults of Oryzaephilus surinamensis L., larvae of Ephestia kuehniella Zeller2, 3 and 5 ppm; 15, 30, 45, 60, and 90 minutes100% at 5ppm for 90 minutes(Sadeghi, Mirabi Moghaddam, and Taghizadeh 2017)

Source (Boopathy et al. 2022)

Ozone as an alternative for Fungi and Mycotoxins

Wheat grain can be treated with ozone to reduce levels of fungi and mycotoxin. Guiseppe et al. 2020 summarize studies showing ozonation is an effective method for removing mycotoxins and detoxifying contaminated agricultural products. They are approximately 400 mycotoxins, of which 30 are considered dangerous to humans and animals. Ozone was able to degrade more dangerous mycotoxins in many food/feed portions and several operational conditions.

TargetConcentration/exposure timeFood/MatrixSignificant resultsReferences
AFB120 and 40 g m−3 of gaseous O3 for 5, 10, 15, and 20 minWheat grainsTotal reduction of AFB1 after 10, 15 and 20 min of exposureLuo et al 2014
AFB14 and 8 g m−3 of aqueous O3 for 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, and 12 hPistachio kernelsReduction by 48, 13, 46, 44 and 44% after 2, 4, 6, 8, 10 and 12 hNooghi et al 2016
AFB1, Aflatoxin B2 (AFB2), Aflatoxin G1 (AFG1) and Aflatoxin G2 (AFG2)15, 30, 45, and 75 g m−3 of gaseous O3 for 60 minCorn flourReduction of AFB1, AFB2 and AFG1 by 79, 71 and 72% at 75 g m−3Wang et al 2016
DON10 m g−3 of gaseous O3 for 30 sWheatReduction by 94%Venter et al 2014
AFB1, AFB2, AFG1 and AFG28.5, 13.5, 20, 25, and 40 g m−3 of gaseous O3 for 20 minAflatoxins dissolved in waterRapid elimination of AFB1 and AFG1Proctor et al 2014
DON100 g m−3 of gaseous O3 for 1 h at 20% moistureWheat flourReduction by 78%Kouchesfahani et al 2015
Aflatoxins and DON60 g m−3 of gaseous O3 for 300 minWheat grainsReduction of aflatoxins and DON by 64 and 48%, respectivelyEPA 2016
DON, HT-2 toxin (HT-2), T-2 toxin (T-2) and zearalenone (ZEA)20 g m−3 of gaseous O3 for 40 and 130 minWheat grainsReduction of HT-2, T-2 and ZEN by 65, 62, and 59% after 40 min. Reduction of DON by 25% after 130 minLi et al 2019
ZEA and OTA100 g m−3 of gaseous O3 for 180 minCornReduction of ZEA and OTA by 91 and 71%, respectivelyDodd et al 2013
DON80 g m−3 of aqueous O3 for 10 minContaminated Wheat, corn and branReduction by 75, 71, and 76% in contaminated wheat, corn, and bran, respectivelyKouchesfahani et al 2015
DON65 g m−3 of aqueous O3 for 60, 120, and 180 min at 10 and 25% of moistureWheat flourReduction by 70, 70, and 78% in wheat flour after 60, 120 and 180 min of exposure at 25% of moistureLi et al 2015
DON and DON-3-Glc40 g m−3 of gaseous O3 for 6 hWheat grains, semolina and pastaReduction of DON and DON-3-Glc by 29 and 44%Alexandre et al 2017
ZEN50 g m−3 of aqueous O3 for 90 minCorn flourReduction by 95%Sun et al 2016

Source (Guiseppe et al. 2020)

Applied ozone has given promising results for important issues in the food industry, such as mycotoxin contamination and pesticide residues. A particular benefit of O3 is its ability to inhibit fungal growth, sporulation, and germination without losing nutrients or sensory qualities. O3 concentration, contact time, and other treatment conditions should be defined for foods and feed to ensure their effectiveness and safety in processing. Since every O3 application is unique, the concentrations and contact times shown before are only guidelines. In the published studies, there were discrepancies in the effect of O3 on insects, microorganisms, and mycotoxins. These discrepancies might be caused by the highly reactive nature and short half-life time of O3 that limit O3 penetrating into grain mass and grain kernels. Therefore, the most failures by various investigators might be their inability to distinguish between the concentration of applied O3 and O3 reacting with microorganisms, mycotoxins, and insects.

Get in touch with us today for more information!

ozone grain storage

Click to see aspects

nano generator


Click to see aspects

Absoluteozone Atlas


Click to see aspects



Click to see aspects



Share This Story, Choose Your Platform!