Ozone: the best option for Cannabis Industry!

Cannabis was one of the first plants cultivated by man. For a long period of time, the few therapies available to the human species were plant-based. Due to its psychoactive effects, cannabis has been used for medicinal purposes for thousands of years, however, studies of its properties and clinical potential have only recently begun.

With increasing acceptance, many countries debate how best to approach the issue and regulate substance use. This acceptance has led to a growing increase in the number of regulated cannabis plantations. Ozone, due to its numerous properties, is an indispensable ally for any cannabis plantation, because when technology is used to increase the means of production of a specific agricultural crop, it results in higher yields at a lower price.

Curious about it? Read the article below and learn more about how effective Ozone can be!

Ozone is a powerful disinfectant with a strong oxidative power, significantly more powerful than chlorine-based solutions.

Ozone can be used to remove all kinds of harmful free-floating molecules, as the third atom of oxygen, when released from the molecule, binds to new substances changing its original chemical composition.

When we expose a cannabis field to ozone, it will eradicate bacteria, fungi, mold, spores, terpenes (evaporated molecules only) and virtually any biological components that can damage the plants.

Ozone is an unstable gas that can destroy bacteria and virus. It is a powerful oxidizer and a potent germicide, with no risk of resistance, build up, immunity or toxic residues.

Ozone treatment is considered a safe and effective disinfectant tool for decontamination of water or air. The combination of microbial disinfection and effective removal of microorganisms makes ozonization an attractive alternative to clean surfaces, sterilizer facilities and equipment, as well as removes bacteria and virus present in the air and controls bad odors. There are many applications and potential uses for ozone in the cannabis industry, both in the growing and processing of cannabis.

How does it work?

Ozone possesses much higher disinfection capabilities than chlorine and other commonly used disinfectants. Because of its short lifetime, when it breaks, returns to its natural form of oxygen, leaving no residual. As this process occurs, the free atom of oxygen seeks out and attacks any foreign particles in the water or air, while destroying bacteria or any organic matter. During this reaction, ozone does not produce compounds like the toxicity of chlorinated compounds.

Aplications

Cannabis is susceptible to a variety of fungi, bacteria, viruses and other contaminants. Ozone is an effective and proven disinfection method for treating water and air used in cannabis production to disinfect surfaces, equipment, recycle water for reuse, and control odor in and around the facility.  There are many applications and potential uses for ozone in the cannabis industry, both in growing and processing.

    • Irrigation water treatment – Growing healthy cannabis plants requires good quality irrigation water. Ozone can treat the water, removing harmful minerals and bacteria present in it, and also increasing its level of oxygen that is beneficial for the development of any plants. This type of treatment, applicable in the cannabis industry, does not require major changes on the existing systems or technologies.

    • Foliar Fogging – Foliar fogging with ozonated water is a quick and effective way to both supply nutrients to plants and prevent and treat bacteria, fungi, molds and parasites.

    • Surface sanitation – Ozone gas dissolved into water at high levels, increases the ORP (oxidation-reduction potential) and can be used as a sanitizer for surface sanitation, equipment, and even plants if required. Ozone in water for surface sanitation is safe because it has no harmful side effects to humans or plants. Systems and processes from the food industry can also be used for the cultivation and further processing of the cannabis plant.

    • Room disinfection and tools sterilization – Ozone gas can be used in rooms to inactivate pathogens, reaching all points in a room. As a gas, it can reach places that are difficult to access and normally neglected. Ozone can be used to sterilise surfaces, equipment, tools or an entire grow room in minutes, without any lasting impact to your cannabis plants. Ozone gas can be used to ensure that all pathogens in a room are destroyed before starting a new culture or to eliminate pathogens between batches of harvested produce.

    • Cannabis Disinfection – Cannabis manufacturers need to put measures in place to ensure successful microbial testing so that the product that reaches consumers and patients is safe and of high quality. By sanitizing with ozone, the most stringent standards for mold and bacteria can be met. Ozone molecules are 2.5 times more effective than chlorine at tackling mould, pathogens, fungi and that dreaded bud rot and can kill a variety of pathogens that are commonly found on cannabis. After ozone destroys bacteria and mold cells, only oxygen remains, so no residue, chemicals, or solvents are left behind on the cannabis product. This organic process allows us to effectively decontaminate the product without altering potency, cannabinoid concentrations, or terpene profiles on cannabis. At the time of harvest, the final harvested product must meet specific standards of bacteria and fungi to be sold to the final consumer for consumption (there are specific standards and manufacturing processes regarding fungi and bacterial counts in the final products). Ozone can be used to ensure the disinfection of the final product to meet the most stringent standards for fungus and bacteria.

    • Exhaust and Odor Control – Ozone is extremely effective in reducing organic odors and is used in many odor reduction/elimination applications. The oldest and most common use of ozone in cannabis crops is for odor control. Placing an ozone system in the exhaust pipes of a ventilation system in order to capture the evaporated terpene molecules. Terpenes are the compounds responsible for giving cannabis a sweet and seductive aroma.

The spread of these pests in cannabis plantations is one of the major causes for the development of various diseases that lead to the loss of many plants and poor quality of the final product.

Solutions:

– Ozonized water for spraying the plants;

– Ozonized water for irrigation;

– Ozone gas to disinfect spaces.

One of the common factors for these problems is the quality of the soil and its poor drainage, in order to avoid this problem, the use of ozonized water in irrigation will not only oxygenate the soil but also eliminate bacteria, viruses, fungi or nematodes or other parasites who are housed there. Unlike other solutions to these problems, ozone does not change the pH of the water.

 

FungusSpeciesDescriptionOzone Action
Botrytis
AlliiPathogenic fungus that mainly affects the shoots in the flowering phase, producing necrosis of the parts it affects and of extremely rapid reproduction that can lead to the total destruction of the plant, in addition to being harmful to human health.Susceptible to Ozone
CenereaFogging ozonized water at 3.8 mg/l for 2 minutes
Powdery mildew & Downy mildewPseudoperonospora cannabinaCommon fungi, which can be confused and which manifest themselves in the form of white powder and which, if not controlled in time, can affect the sprouts which, in turn, cannot be consumed as they are harmful to human health.Fogging ozonated water for a minimum of 2 minutes at concentrations of 0.7-1 ppm ozone
Pseudoperonospora humuli
Fusarium OxysporumLycopersiciFungus with a great destructive potential that is generally transmitted to the plant through water, substrate, infected tools or cuttings.1,1 mg/l for 10 minutes
Molonogea99,99% destruction at 1.1 mg/l for 20 minutes
PhytophthoraErythrosepticaFungus, also known as popping root rot, usually appears due to excessive watering, poor drainage, and attack by small insects and other organisms that damage the roots and cause them to begin to rot.Susceptible to Ozone through irrigation with ozonated water
Parasitic3,8 mg/l for 2 minutes
VerticilliumFungus that causes symptoms on the plant, like the Fusarium fungus, although it is less common. This fungus obstructs the plant's xylem, causing the flow of nutrients to be blocked and the plant not to receive food.Susceptible to Ozone through irrigation with ozonated water
SclerotiniaRolfsiiFungus that appears on plants as white cotton-like mycelium on the stems and spreads to the roots, causing the affected area to rot and the leaves to wither. Preventive measures such as cleaning and hygiene of the cultivation site, soils with good drainage and adequate ventilation help to avoid wounds on the plant that facilitate the penetration of the fungus.Susceptible to Ozone through irrigation with ozonated water and disinfection of the space with ozone gas
Sclerotiorum
PythiumUltimumParasitic fungus that penetrates the plant through the roots, seriously affecting its vascular system and preventing the plant from receiving food properly.Susceptible to Ozone through irrigation with ozonated wate
AlternariaSolaniCommon fungus that is found in the environment and that affects plants, as its spores are carried by the wind and proliferate in decomposing remains.Susceptible to Ozone through irrigation with ozonated wate

Benefits

    • Powerful and effective disinfectant

    • Kill Bacteria, Fungi, Mould and Powdery Mould Spores;

    • Prevent Bud Rot;

    • Kill Spider Mites and all other pest insects and destroy their colonies;

    • Kill Mildew;

    • Eliminate Microbes, Algae & Root-Born Pathogens;

    • Its strong oxidizing properties make ozone one of the most efficient and fastest microbicides;

    • Disinfection treatment of water and air;

    • Prevents the regrowth of microorganisms after ozonization, unlike ultraviolet and chlorine disinfection;

    • It is more effective than chlorine in destroying virus and bacteria;

    • Ozone decomposes rapidly – no harmful chemical residues are left behind;

    • Must be generated onsite, it is mean that there are fewer safety concerns associated with shipping and handling;

    • No measuring, monitoring, or handling of chemicals;

    • Eliminate Hydrogen Sulphide;

    • Provides additional oxygen to the water and soil;

    • Removes odors permanently;

    • Promotes healthier plants;

    • Environmentally friendly.

Scientific Articles

Published: 2023

MEDICINAL GENOMICS | February 1st | Cannabis Microbial Testing Regulations by State

Published: 2021

S. VIJAY RAKESH REDDY, D. V. SUDHAKAR RAO, R. R. SHARMA, P. PREETHI, R. PANDISELVAM | November 1st | Role of Ozone in Post-Harvest Disinfection and Processing of Horticultural Crops: A Review

BAVADHARINI BOOPATHY, ANBARASAN RAJAN, MAHENDRAN RADHAKRIHNAN | June 23rd | Ozone: An Alternative Fumigant in Controlling the Stored Product Insects and Pests: A Status Report

STEFANOS TESTEMPASIS, GEORGIA TANOU, IOANNIS MINAS, MARTINA SAMIOTAKI, ATHANASSIOS MOLASSIOTIS, GEORGIOS KARAOGLANIDIS | March 10th | Unraveling Interactions of the Necrotrophic Fungal Species Botrytis cinerea With 1-Methylcyclopropene or Ozone-Treated Apple Fruit Using Proteomic Analysis

ARIANI C. WARTENBERG, PATRICIA A. HOLDEN, HEKIA BODWITCH, PHOEBE PARKER-SHAMES, THOMAS NOVOTNY, THOMAS C. HARMON, STEPHEN C. HART, MARC BEUTEL, MICHELLE GILMORE, EUNHA HOH, VAN BUTSIC | January 4th | Cannabis and the Environment: What Science Tells Us and What We Still Need to Know

International Ozone Association – Pan American Group (PAG) | 2021 | Air Treatment

Published: 2020

FELIPE AGOSTINI, MELISSA FACCINI, FRANCISCO FITARELLI & OTHERS | October 1st | In Vitro Comparison of Antibacterial Effect of Ozonated Water and Ozonated Gas

MARGHERITA LUONGO, OLIVIERO MARINELLI, LAURA ZEPPA, CRISTINA AGUZZI, MARIA BEATRICE MORELLI, CONSUELO AMANTINI, ANDREA FRASSINETI, MARIANNE DI COSTANZO, ALESSANDRO FANELLI, GIORGIO SANTONI, MASSIMO NABISSI | September 27th | Cannabidiol and Oxygen-Ozone Combination Induce Cytotoxicity in Human Pancreatic Ductal Adenocarcinoma Cell Lines

MARIELLE PAGES, DIDIER KLEIBER, ROMAIN PIERRON, FRÉDÉRIC VIOLLEAU | January 29th | Ozone Effects on Botrytis cinerea Conidia using a Bubble Column: Germination Inactivation and Membrane Phospholipids Oxidation

Published: 2019
Published: 2018
Published: 2017

M. MARTINELLI, F. GIOVANNANGELI, S. ROTUNNO, C. M. TROMBETTA, E. MONTOMOLI | March | Water and air ozone treatment as an alternative sanitizing technology

Published: 2015

SHEYA WANI, JAGPREET K. MAER, JOSEPH R. THOMPSON, JEREMY BARNES, IAN SINGLETON | March 26th | Effect of Ozone Treatment on Inactivation of Escherichia coli and Listeria sp. on Spinach

Published: 2014

IVAN TCHAKAROV | November 11th | Metrolina’s Quest For Clean Water

BARON WASTELAND | April 23rd | Ozone: An Indoor Garden Super Tool

Published: 2012

STEVEN D. LAMBERT, NIGEL J. D. GRAHAM, BRIAN T. CROLL | October 17th | RESEARCH NOTEOzone Degradation Of Selected Non-Agricultural Herbicides

M. PRABAKARAN, SELVI S. TAMIL, S. MERINAL, A. PANNEESELVAN | 2012 | Effect of ozonation on pathogenic bacteria

Published: 2010

IOANNIS S. MINAS, GEORGE S. KARAOGLANIDIS, GEORGE A. MANGANARIS, MILTIADIS VASILAKAKIS | December | Effect of ozone application during cold storage of kiwifruit on the development of stem-end rot caused by Botrytis cinerea

Published: 2009

DEANA SHARPE, LIHUA FAN, KEN McRAE, BRAD WALKER, RON MACKAY, CRAIG DOUCETTE | August | Effects of ozone treatment on Botrytis cinerea and Sclerotinia sclerotiorum in relation to horticultural product quality

JAMES B. HUDSON, MANJU SHARMA, SELVARANI VIMALANATHAN | May 27th | Development of a Practical Method for Using Ozone Gas as a Virus Decontaminating Agent

Published: 2008

MANJU SHARMA, JAMES B. HUDSON | October | Ozone gas is an effective and practical antibacterial agent

Published: 2006

N. MOHAN, KIRIT PATEL, K. PADMANABHAN, S. ANANTHI | August 18th | Ozone for Plant Pathological Applications

Published: 2002

BENJAMAS THANOMSUB, VIPAVEE ANUPUNPISIT, SILCHAI CHANPHETCH & OTHERS | September | Effects of ozone treatment on cell growth and ultrastructural changes in bacteria

Published: 1998

US FDA (Food and Drug Administration – Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition) | April 13th | Guidance for Industry – Guide to Minimize Microbial Food Safety Hazards for Fresh Fruits and Vegetables

Published: 1995

US FDA (Food and Drug Administration – Department of Health and Human Services) | November 13th | Direct Food Substances Affirmed As Generally Recognized As Safe

Published: 1989

J.B. WHITTAKER, L.W. KRISTIANSEN, T.N. MIKKELSEN, R. MOORE | 1989 | Responses to ozone of insects feeding on a crop and a weed species

0