An article in the Herald this week talked about several innovations that were showcased at the Hamilton Fieldays event. Unfortunately, one of the products, DermaShield, appears to be be very much pseudo-scientific.

Under the heading "HEALING FOOT INFECTION - ONE STEP AT A TIME", the article describes an ankle bracelet for cows that treats foot infections. The purported method that the velcro bracelet uses is an "ionic force field", which is supposed to keep bacteria away.

"It's not an antibiotic but it creates like a force-field around the cow's hoof that keeps all the germs away from the wound and allows it to heal."

The words used are enough to set off my skeptical radar, and a delve into this shows that although there is mention of "costly research", I'm unable to find any write-ups of their work. My concern is that their studies are not being performed rigorously enough, and instead are relying on human error to make an ineffective product appear to work. The described mechanism of creating an ion force field via a small amount of copper in the bracelet sounds scientific, but it appears to just be gobbledygook! Search online for copper ion force fields only brings up unrelated papers about DNA and molecular forces, and for ion force fields brings up science fiction and computer games.