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Scottish scientists unleash new repellent on midges

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Campers have now got a new weapon in their arsenal that should prove effective against the dreaded midge and other biting insects.

Smidge is DEET-free repellent that is specially formulated with the outdoor enthusiast in mind. It provides long-lasting eight-hour protection and is water and sweat resistant.

Smidge has proven to be just as effective as DEET-based repellents, making it a powerful, yet family-friendly alternative. It’s safe for use on adults and children over 30 months, as well as pregnant women and is recommended for use by the World Health Organisation.

In addition to repelling midges, Smidge also protects against other biting insects such as mosquitoes, horse flies, fleas, sand flies and ticks.

The repellent has been developed by Advanced Pest Solutions Ltd (APS), at its laboratories in the University of Edinburgh’s ETTC Biospace facility.

The development was led by Dr Alison Blackwell, a world-renowned authority on midge behaviour and leader of the scientific team behind the Scottish Midge Forecast, which has been providing forecasts for print and television media for the past few years.

Dr Blackwell says: “Smidge’s unique formula works by throwing midges off our scent. Midges start their hunt for us using smell, detecting CO2 and a whole cocktail of other body odours.

"It’s the release of CO2 in our exhaled breath that guides a midge to its prey. Smidge interferes with this process and confuses the insect – when a midge can’t smell us, it can’t find us and therefore won’t bite us.”
  • The product comes in a 75ml lightweight aluminium and is available online from the company website midgeforecast.co.uk and from Scottish stockists. Prices start at £5.87.
This news story is one of many camping-related articles included in the August issue of Camping magazine.

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30/06/2010 Share this story Share on Facebook icon Share on Twitter icon Share on Pinterest icon Share on Google Plus icon Share on Linked In icon Share via Email icon

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