Pesticides (which come from the Latin cida, to kill, and the English pest, troublesome) are substances used in agriculture to combat organisms which harm crops.
Families of pesticides
- herbicides intended to kill weeds which stifle the growth of the desired plants ;
- insecticides intended to destroy insects which feed on or lay eggs on crops ;
- fungicides which kill microscopic fungi responsible for rot, and ;
- antiparasitics which kill parasitic worms.
Origin of pesticides
The pesticides are often non-natural chemicals developed in the chemical revolution at the start of the XXth century (organochlorides, organophosphates, DDT, 2,4-D), many of which are harmful to human health.
Pesticides are hazardous to human health. © USDA, Wikimedia, public domain