Breaking News

Error rendering macro 'rss' : Failed to recover from an exception:


Topic editor

[This article has been tagged for development.]


Bensulide is one of the few Organophosphates used as an herbicide to control grasses and weeds that threaten numerous crops. Its domestic use is relatively low even though it is classified as a General Use Pesticide (#EPA, 1990). Bensulide's toxicity is not very high, but it can cause damage if it is ingested in large quantities (#EXTOXNET).


Just the facts

Physical Information

Name: Bensulide

Use: herbicide

Source: synthetic chemistry

Recommended daily intake: none

Absorption: ingestion

Sensitive individuals: workers and homeowners who employ bensulide

Toxicity/symptoms: slightly toxic

Regulatory facts: General Use Pesticide

Environmental: toxic to aquatic organisms, bees, and slightly toxic to birds

Recommendations: use sparingly

Chemical Structure

Structure received from


Chemical Description


Pharmacology and Metabolism


Uses and Benefits

Bensulide continues to be used to control unwanted weeds and grasses around numerous crops. Around 550,000 pounds are used annually (#EPA, 2006).

Health Effects

Bensulide's acute toxicity is not high, but it can cause problems if ingested in large quantities. Symptoms of acute poisoning are vomiting, convulsions, abdominal cramps, slurring of speech, and even death (#EXTOXNET).

Bensulide inhibits Cholinasterase production like all other organiphosphates including the Nerve Agents. Therefore, nervous system ailments are the result of chronic exposure to bensulide.

Not everyone is at risk of poisoning. Workers and homeowners who apply bensulide are those that need be most careful. Bensulide exposure from foods and water sources is negligible (#EPA, 1990).

Environmental Effects

The environmental effects of bensulide are not completely known (#EPA, 1999). However, it is apparent that Bensulide is slightly toxic to birds, and is slightly to highly toxic to aquatic organisms and bees (#EXTOXNET).


People who regularly handle bensulide or who have it applied to their residence should take extra care to avoid ingestion. Watch out for children eating dirt and wash hands often.

Those working with bensulide should wear protective gear at all times. See #EPA, 1990 for detailed instruction about precautionary measures.

Current Events



It is classified as a general use pesticide.



Teaching Resources



EXTOXNET. Pesticide Information Profiles - Bensulide. Revised June 1996. Accessed 5-1-07.

Environmental Protection Agency. "Bensulide Facts". June, 2000. Accessed 5-1-07.

Environmental Protection Agency. "Environmental Risk Assessment - Bensulide". June, 1999. Accessed 5-1-07.

  • No labels