Paclobutrazol: Sometimes what you don't know can hurt you.

It's time you were informed about paclobutrazol, a potentially dangerous plant growth regulator used in several mainstream nutrient products you may be using.

First of all, using paclobutrazol to grow plants you intend to ingest, or to sell for consumption, is illegal.

Why? Because the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) believes it's probably toxic. Nothing has been scientifically proven when it comes to the effects of paclobutrazol consumption in the human body, but studies done with rats are less than encouraging - it was linked to serious liver damage in them. There are reports of paclobutrazol being carcinogenic as well, but nothing confirmed.

Regardless, the legal status of paclobutrazol used to grow consumable crops is very clear: it's not.

Check out what these scientists have to say:

Then why would anyone want to use it? Because there are seemingly desirable effects paclobutrazol can have on your plants. Paclobutrazol is very effective at growing shorter, bushier plants and triggering earlier fruit sets with more pronounced flowering.

But this is a benefit that is hardly worth the potential liver disease or even cancer (the two main problems suggested in the animal studies). Which is why, legally, the use of paclobutrazol has been limited to growing ornamental plants.

Which products can you find paclobutrazol in right now?

  • Bushload by General Hydroponics
  • Gravity by Emerald Triangle
  • Flower Dragon by Grow Envy
  • Phosphoload by Dutch Master

Does Advanced Nutrients use paclobutrazol?

No. Simple as that.

As part of its effort to eliminate the illegal use of paclobutrazol, the California Department of Food and Agriculture has pulled several of our products from the shelves multiple times, including Bud Factor X, Bud Blood, Bud Ignitor, Big Bud (liquid and powder) and Overdrive.

All tests came negative for paclobutrazol.

Where does Advanced Nutrients stand on the issue?

We believe that you should be able to trust the nutrient company you invest in. Not only is paclobutrazol potentially harmful to your health, it's illegal for growing consumable crops. Negligent companies who include paclobutrazol as an ingredient in their products are putting you in danger of extreme consequences, both for your health and legal well-being, in the name of profit.

What are other hydro companies saying?

Here's a flier we found in response to the paclobutrazol issue from Humboldt's Own:

Paclo Flyer

Regardless of whether some other countries use paclobutrazol some of the time for consumable crops, the law in the United States is clear. It's illegal. Period. These companies are risking your well-being for profit. End of story.

So, What Can You Do About It?

Easy. Get the facts. Read labels. Have conversations. And ask questions.

If you're a store owner, do you want to run the risk of carrying something illegal, knowing that it could lead to big fines or worse? One store that we talked to told us that they got a $10,000 fine for carrying it. Why risk it?

If you grow, do you want to risk your livelihood by providing something that's not just illegal for consumption, but potentially harmful, as well? Not only that, paclobutrazol has been shown to reduce the aroma, flavor, and even the amount of beneficial compounds in medicinal plants. So in addition to breaking the law and putting people at risk, you're also jeopardizing your reputation as a grower. Why risk it?

And if you're a patient, do you want to jeopardize your health any further by introducing a compound that is most likely harmful? Why risk it?

Are There Any Alternatives?

Yes. Bud Blood and Bud Ignitor both deliver many of the same benefits as paclobutrazol, but without any of the risks. We suggest you consider these alternatives, instead.



Supplemental materials regarding paclobutrazol:
California Department of Pesticide Regulation - Risk Characterization Document (PDF)
Oregon Department of Agriculture - General Information
National Center for Biotechnology Information - Exposure to Paclobutrazol Effects
Environmental Protection Agency - Integrated Risk Information
Pesticide Action Network North America - Toxicity Information


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