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Researchers innovate pesticide repellent fabric
Jul '10
The heavy use of pesticides in farm lands in recent years, is giving rise to many skin-related diseases to farmers and workers toiling in the fields, due to absorption of pesticides through the skin.

Now, the Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) scientists have innovated a developed a special pesticide repellent fabric. After having successfully tested the fabric, the researchers have decided to market the traditional kurta-pyjama made from the fabrics, amongst the farmers.

A blend of cotton and polyester was taken as a base material because this is the most popularly used fabric for kurta-pyjama, the routine garments worn by peasantry in Punjab and can reduce occupational hazards amongst farmers by over 90 percent, who have been supplied the clothing at very remunerative rates.

Fibre2fashion spoke to Dr Neelam Grewal, Dean of the College of Home Science, PAU, to know more about the innovation. She said, “A bench mark survey was carried out that showed that applicators who spray agricultural pesticides in the fields, do not use any protective gear while spraying leading number of health hazards. The only protection used is a piece of fabric wrapped around the face”.

Speaking about the pesticide repellent fabric, she informed, “The conditions for application of water and an oil repellent finish on polyester-cotton blend were optimized without having significant, detrimental effect on the properties of the fabric and the fabric treated at optimized condition was used to construct a pair of kurta-pyjama”.

“Along with this a hood and a pair of gloves were also made from this fabric. While designing these garments, care was taken to use minimum possible number of seams to check the seepage through seams. Even the thread used for sewing was treated with the finish. The trials showed that the kurta-pyjama, being the traditional wear was acceptable to the agriculture pesticide applicators”, she observed by saying.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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