Bromoxynil Octanoate: a wildly used herbicide

Apr 13, 2023

As farmers strive to protect their crops and maximize yields, the use of herbicides has become an essential tool in modern agriculture. One widely used herbicide is bromoxynil octanoate, a synthetic auxin with a unique mode of action and versatility. It has been shown to be effective in controlling broad-spectrum broad-leaved weeds in a variety of crops.

In this blog post, we delve into the world of bromoxynil octanoate, discussing its mode of action, uses, benefits, and potential risks to provide a comprehensive overview of this widely used herbicide.

Introduction of Bromoxynil Octanoate

Bromoxynil Octanoate is a herbicide used to control weeds in crops such as corn, sorghum, and wheat. It is an ester derivative of bromoxynil with an octanoate group (8 carbon atoms) on the benzonitrile functional group. Bromoxynil Octanoate is a derivative of the herbicide Bromoxynil Octanoate first introduced in the 1960s.

The development of bromoxynil and bromoxynil octanoate involved a combination of chemical synthesis, bioassay testing, and field trials. The compounds were tested for their efficacy in controlling various weeds, as well as their impact on the environment and health. It is a more potent bromoxynil formulation with improved safety and handling.

Bromoxynil Octanoate is still used today as a herbicide in many parts of the world. Its use is regulated by government agencies such as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) in the European Union, which assess its safety for human health and the environment.

Chemical Structure of Bromoxynil Octanoate
Fig 1. Chemical Structure of Bromoxynil Octanoate.

Formulations of Bromoxynil Octanoate

Bromoxynil octanoate is often used in combination with other active ingredients in herbicide formulations to enhance weed control and reduce the risk of resistance development.

Here are some common active ingredients that are often used in combination with bromoxynil octanoate: MCPA, dicamba, metsulfuron-methyl, glyphosate, metazachlor, nicosulfuron, and atrazine.

Different combinations of herbicides containing bromoxynil octanoate and other active ingredients are available, often tailored to the characteristics of the individual crops and weed control needs.

How does Bromoxynil Octanoate work?

Bromoxynil Octanoate’s mechanism of action involves inhibiting a key enzyme in plants that disrupts the plant’s ability to produce protein and grow. It effectively kills weeds while leaving crops unharmed.

Bromoxynil Octanoate is also readily absorbed by plant tissue, meaning it can be quickly transported throughout the weed for fast and effective kill.

Fig 2. Weeds

Application of Bromoxynil Octanoate

This unique combination of chemical groups makes bromoxynil octanoate highly effective at killing a broad spectrum of broadleaf weeds. Bromoxynil Octanoate is often used in combination with other herbicides to control hard-to-kill weeds such as Canada thistle, dandelion, and lambs-wort. It can also be used alone to control annual broad-leaved weeds such as quinoa, water hemp, and vetch.

Bromoxynil octanoate has a broad range of crop use and has been registered for use in a variety of crops, including field and sweet corn, cotton, soybeans, wheat, barley, oats, and rice. Depending on the particular crop and weed type, herbicides can be applied using ground, aerial, or chemical methods.

In corn, bromoxynil octanoate is usually applied post-emergence to control broadleaf weeds.

In soybeans, it is used to control common lamb shank, velvet leaf, and morning glory.

In wheat it is used to control toffled brome, mustard, and chickweed.

Degradation of Bromoxynil Octanoate

Studies have revealed that bromoxynil octanoate is degraded by microorganisms in soil with a half-life of about 10 days. Conversely, chemical hydrolysis may occur when it enters the body of animals and plants, yielding phenol and free acid, along with certain dehalogenation.

This means that bromoxynil octanoate breaks down quickly into harmless compounds. This makes it an environmentally friendly choice for farmers looking to control weeds while minimizing the impact on the surrounding ecosystem.

Pros and cons of bromoxynil octanoate

Bromoxynil octanoate is a herbicide used to kill weeds. However, there are pros and cons to using bromoxynil octanoate.

Some of the advantages of bromoxynil octanoate include its efficacy, safety, and environmental friendliness. Bromoxynil octanoate has been shown to be effective in killing a wide variety of weeds and is safe to use around humans and animals. In addition, bromoxynil octanoate is not harmful to the environment.

However, there are some disadvantages to using bromoxynil octanoate. Bromoxynil octanoate is a relatively new herbicide, and as such, research on its long-term environmental effects is limited. Several studies have shown that bromoxynil octanoate can negatively impact plant and animal biodiversity by destroying natural habitats.

How to use bromoxynil Octanoate safely?

The safe use of bromoxynil octanoate is critical to the protection of human health, the environment and non-target organisms.

Here are some key guidelines for safe and responsible use:

Read and follow label directions

Before using bromoxynil octanoate, read and understand the label directions provided by the manufacturer. Follow recommended rates, timing of application, and other guidelines for specific crops, weeds, and environmental conditions.

Wear appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE)

Wear appropriate PPE, such as gloves, protective clothing, goggles, and respiratory protection, as directed on the label. PPE helps minimize direct contact with herbicides and reduces the risk of exposure.

Use the correct equipment and application techniques

Apply bromoxynil octanoate using calibrated equipment and using the proper technique (e.g., proper nozzle selection, spray pressure, and droplet size) to ensure effectively and targeted application while minimizing drift.

Avoid application near sensitive areas

Do not apply bromoxynil octanoate near sensitive areas such as bodies of water, residential areas, schools or other areas where non-target organisms may be present.

Follow the Restricted Entry Interval (REI)

Comply with the REI specified on the label, which is the minimum time that must elapse before re-entering the handling area without proper PPE. This helps ensure that any residue of bromoxynil octanoate has fully dissipated.

Proper Storage and Disposal of Herbicides

Store bromoxynil octanoate in its original container in a safe, cool, and dry place away from food, feed, and other chemicals. Properly dispose of empty containers and unused herbicides according to local regulations and guidelines.

To sum up

The effectiveness of bromoxynil octanoate in controlling broadleaf weeds, combined with its relatively low toxicity and short half-life in the environment, makes it an attractive option for weed control in a variety of crops.

Bromoxynil octanoate is the largest product in the bromoxynil family. Members of its family include bromoxynil, bromoxynil butyrate, bromoxynil heptanoate, and bromoxynil octanoate. Heben is a top manufacturer of Bromoxynil Octanoate and its range of products. If you are interested in learning more about this compound, please feel free to contact us at