Heat is not a new technology -- its benefits in killing flour mill insects were first demonstrated in Kansas by George Dean in 1911. Several grain-processing facilities have used heat treatment successfully for at least six decades, and it is one of the effective options for organic grain-processing facilities. 

"The concept is very simple," said the entomologist, who explained that "insects are cold-blooded, so raising the temperature beyond their upper limit for survival and reproduction (usually above 110 degrees F) results in death; how quickly and how many one kills insects depends on reaching 122 degrees F in 8 to 10 hours and maintaining temperatures between 122 and 140 degrees F for several hours." 

Sulfuryl fluoride, a non-ozone depleting fumigant, was registered for use in grain-processing facilities in January 2004 as a methyl bromide alternative. 

According to Subramanyam, methyl bromide is a fantastic fumigant the grain-processing industry has relied on for nearly six decades.