Diatomaceous earth for food preservation

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Please explain the scientific difference between food grade DE and pool grade DE. There is a large difference in price and what is specifically bad about non food grade? Thank you. Jeanne 6265@aol.com

-- Jeanne Wortley (Jeanne6265@aol.com), May 12, 1999



The difference is...one is beneficial while the other one will kill you..

Get your D.E. from a reputable garden nursery, preferably one that promotes organic gardening techniques...the D.E. is of a very fine consistency and will go a long way when mixing it in with you grains or other foods...use just enough to finely coat all the food...and wear a dust mask while mixing it into the foods

I also dust inside my plastic containers that I stock my packaged foods such as powdered milk, Ramen noodles, packaged noodles, etc...(I leave the foods unopened in the original packaging)

Do not rinse the D.E. off the food when you are preparing...you will not even know it is there after the food is prepared...and the small amount that you consume will be beneficial to you in preventing parasites from surviving in your digestive tract...

The D.E. will also benefit any pets or domestic farm animals you may have...just mix a little into their food...I have read that chickens like to have some available to dust themselves in, to keep parasites off of themselves

-- Texas Terri (DeepInTheHeart@Texas.com), May 12, 1999.

This is the first I've heard that there is a difference in DE. Can you provide any links or sources for this?

-- Doug (douglasjohnson@prodigy.net), May 12, 1999.

I've read here or elsewhere (can't remember exactly) that if you've dusted grains with DE before storing them, you need to remove as much of it as possible before you grind the grains. The DE can wear out the burrs on the grinders prematurely. Or so I've heard. Confirmation, anyone? Or am I misinformed (again)?

-- Don (whytocay@hotmail.com), May 12, 1999.

Try www.wholewheat.com/Pages/perma4.html They ship immediately.

-- Drew (Kolosky@Prodigy.net), May 12, 1999.

There was a previous post on DE- don't know where exactly- but it regarded someone asking what DE was and it was spelled wrong if that helps. anyway- there is a big difference between food grade and non food grade. swimming pool type DE is NON food grade. the kind that's used in maple syrup filtration systems is food grade.

-- anita (hillsidefarm@drbs.com), May 12, 1999.

I want to believe that diatomaceous earth (the "food grade" kind) is beneficial, but then why is it necessary to wear a dust mask? If it hurts the mucus membranes in your lungs, then wouldn't it damage your intestines too? If a larger amount of silica skeletons (in the "pool" grade) is harmful, then isn't the lesser amount (in "food" grade) just less harmful, along the lines of "acceptable risk"?

I was going to link to a commercial site for DE but can't spell it (Permaguard?) It is linked to from Gary Hansen's site (http://www.pleasanthillgrain.com) which seems to be not working right now either... The Waltonfeed site and Hagan's Food Storage FAQ, say that DE is great.

But those questions still bother me, despite everything that's said. My next grain order gives the option of packaging with DE. ... Decisions, decisions.

-- Debbie (dbspence@usa.net), May 12, 1999.

DE is just like water in the sense that you can swallow it and it is harmeless but when inhaled it is at the very least harmefull.

-- Greybear (greybear@home.com), May 12, 1999.

I just recently read that the pool D.E. is very harmful to eat and that it has been treated (melted?) and is not to be used for food. I have read several times that food grade D.E. should be added to grains at the rate of 2% and that it will not be harmful at all to you. Sorry I cannot recall where I found this info., but it seemed legitimate (no they weren't selling food grade D.E.!). Good luck!

-- Kristi (securx@succeed.net), May 13, 1999.

One of the pages on the Permaguard site explains the difference between food grade and non-food grade Diatomaceous earth">blockquote>"Many deposits of Diatomaceous Earth are unsuited for grain storage and have dangerously high levels of crystalline silica. PermaGuard D-10 is produced from a freshwater source and is unique in its low 1% crystalline silica content. The material is so naturally pure that it only has to be milled and classified(sorted by size). There are no additives of any kind."

They also give instructions for use. Application rate is approx. 1 oz. per 18 lbs. of grain.

-- Tom Carey (tomcarey@mindspring.com), May 13, 1999.

You can get feed-grade DE from a grain elevator or feed mill for a LOT less than from a gardening supply house or any other source that I've found. I've got 100# that cost me just $40 if memory serves.

-- David Palm (djpalm64@yahoo.com), May 13, 1999.

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