Welcome to the corn gluten meal research page. Here you will find information regarding the use of corn gluten meal as a natural herbicide for use on turf and organic crop production.
Update on Dr. Nick Christians research on corn gluten meal
Background: It was found that a byproduct of the corn (Zea mays L.) wet-milling process, corn gluten meal, has potential as a natural preemergence herbicide. U.S. Patent 5,030,268 on the use of corn gluten meal as a natural herbicide was issued in 1991. The patent was reissued in 1993 with broader claims that cover the use of corn gluten meal on field crops and home gardens. Two additional patents were also issued in 1993 on the technology. The first is on the use of hydrolyzed proteins from corn and other grains that were shown to have higher levels of herbicidal activity than the corn gluten meal. These materials are water soluble and can be sprayed on the soils surface. The second patent was on 5 dipeptides extracted from the hydrolyzed corn gluten meal. These dipeptides were shown to have the same type of biological activity observed when the corn gluten meal and the hydrolyzed meal are applied to the soil.
The sprayable materials have been found to be less stable than the corn gluten meal in field studies. Current research is being directed at methods of stabilizing these soluble materials to improve their efficacy.