Maleic hydrazide is one of several synthetic growth regulators in agriculture. It has systemic effects and is transported through the pathways of the plants into the roots, where it inhibits cell division, thereby delaying sprouting or slowing root growth. Since this growth-inhibiting effect is strong yet temporary, maleic hydrazide is often used in the production of potatoes, garlic, and onions in order to inhibit sprouting. Maleic hydrazide’s growth regulating properties are also used for the purpose of weed control. The advantage of this substance’s mechanism is that it only has an effect on green plants, whereas other organisms are only affected slightly or not at all. Animals, in contrast, have a high tolerance to maleic hydrazide. In studies where rats consumed 1% maleic hydrazide with their diets throughout their lives, no effects were able to be detected. In humans as well, no adverse health effects should be expected when the substance is used properly and for its intended purpose.
The use of maleic hydrazide as a active substance on plants is permitted in the European Union. The permitted maximum levels are provided in the pesticide regulation (EC) No 396/2005.
The GBA Group has years of experience analyzing maleic hydrazide and carries out this analysis routinely by means of LC-MS/MS technology. If you have any questions, we will gladly assist you.