Overview of a variety of trials on agricultural applications of effective microorganisms (EM).
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Effective Microorganisms (EM) is a commercially available liquid containing a variety of lactic acid bacteria, yeasts and phototrophic bacteria. These organisms create conditions which favour mutual support and enable them to outcompete harmful pathogens, while producing useful substances such as vitamins, enzymes, hormones, amino acids and anti-oxidants that create a reducing environment. Various EM agricultural application trials were run, mostly in partnership with farmers. The diverse applications included the following: improving soil conditions for better plant growth, treating waste water, controlling pests and diseases, improving animal growth, enhancing compost production and extending the shelf life of harvested crops. Generally EM appears to give the best results in situations where the natural balance of microorganisms has been severely disrupted or where agricultural inputs are in short supply. In situations where natural microorganism populations are reasonably intact, or where a balanced supply of inputs is available, the addition of EM does not seem to make a significant difference.