Original EM recipe
World of EM

EM, an introduction

EM, the abbreviation of Effective Micro-organisms, is a mixture of micro-organisms that can be found in nature. The mixture was discovered by Teruo Higa in the early 1980’s. There are about 80 species of micro-organisms present in EM and it is said that they contain all the evolutionary principles. The microorganisms responsible for the effects of EM are lactic acid bacteria, yeasts, actinomyces, fermenting fungi and phototrophic (photo-synthetic). Known for centuries for their role in making food (such as cheese, yogurt, wine, beer, and miso). It is nice to note that EM is a mix of aerobic (surviving only in oxygen-rich environments) and anaerobic (surviving only in oxygen-poor environments) microorganisms, a mix that scientists have long thought could not coexist. EM proves the contrary, it even turns out that they create the most favorable conditions for each other. This  collaboration provides the regenerative harmonizing effect of EM. The applications of EM appear to be endless and we believe it to be a part of the solution to all the environmental and health problems we currently face. An Earth Saving Revolution, as Higa will say in his first book.

“Everything can be solved with EM, if it doesn’t seem to work it hasn’t been applied correctly yet”

Teruo Higa

The effects of EM

EM has a harmonizing, immune system strengthening, regenerating, syntropic and antioxidant effect allowing it to naturally create a healthy and balanced environment. Due to its positive properties, the applications of EM are virtually endless:

  • a better and healthier harvest (both vegetable garden and agriculture)
  • for optimal plant health
  • for optimal soil health
  • for animal health
  • for human health
  • in the household (such as cleaning, removing odors, organic waste disposal)
  • less pollution and particulate matter
  • neutralization of the harmfulness of chemicals and pesticides
  • protection and preservation of (building) materials (sustainability)
  • water purification, water vitalization and water improvement (black water, gray water, drinking water, swimming pools, lakes and sea)
  • neutralizes the harmful effects of various radiation (even radioactivity!)
  • protection against extreme weather influences
  • a harmonious living environment
  • and there are still experiments and new applications being discovered.

How does EM work? And what does it do?

In the world of microorganisms there are “good” microorganisms and “bad” [*1] microorganisms. The “bad” microorganisms cause rot and degeneration through oxidation. The waste products that are released can often be recognized by stench and foul odors if they are released in large quantities (ammonia, methane, hydrogen sulphur). If you eat this (even in small amounts)  it can cause (chronic) diseases or make you age faster.

The good micro-organisms have constructive and regenerative properties, they produce antioxidants, amino acids and vitamins. This process ensures a pleasant smell.

Just like with people, in the world of micro-organisms there are leaders and followers and you speak of the dominance principle. In short, 90% of micro-organisms are opportunistic and follow the most dominant group. These can be the “bad” or “good” microorganisms. EM contains only regenerative antioxidant micro-organisms, the “good”. As soon as you add EM to a situation or ecosystem where harmful micro-organisms predominate, it ensures a switch from putrefaction (oxidation) to regeneration (anti-oxidation). So if you introduce EM in the right amounts, you can convert any living environment into a regulatory and vital environment and the harmful and pathogenic (disease-causing) micro-organisms are suppressed.

An example with milk. If you leave this alone and the “bad” micro-organisms can run their course, they cause rotting by means of oxidation. During the oxidation process, the familiar foul odors and odors are released that we know when something is not right, sour or rotten.

But if you add lactic acid bacteria to milk, they can actually convert the milk into yogurt. This is done by the antioxidants that make these effective microorganisms. These ensure that rot is prevented and ensure the conversion of milk into yogurt. This process is called fermentation and provides the well-known sour fermentation air.

In addition to the physical effect through antioxidants, EM also works by means of resonance. EM and EM products have a harmonizing magnetic vibration that ensures that the environment resonates with these vibrations and comes into a natural harmony. In all matter, life forms this natural harmony of origin is present. This can be disturbed by various circumstances (such as oxidation, pollution or any other form of disharmonizing conditioning), so that the vibration becomes “polluted” and no longer functions optimally, there is a disturbance in the energy system.

Due to the EM resonance, the natural origin of the matter or life form is touched and reactivated (regeneration). As a result, the noise or disturbance disappears, like the disappears of clutter that has been collected.

To illustrate and emphasize this regenerative property: EM is able to reduce the harmful effects of heavy metals, UV radiation and radioactive radiation.

Limit breakthrough effect

With EM the Limit breakthrough effect can be achieved. If you assume that every plant has a perfect blueprint, EM can be used to ensure that the plant grows towards its perfect blueprint. This allows EM to ensure that limit breaking phenomena will take place. These are properties that you rarely or not encounter in a plant. Traits that are inherent in the plant itself, but normally cannot be expressed due to conditions that are not optimal for the plant. Such effects can be: higher yields, bigger fruits, larger flower, better taste and better smell.

If it doesn’t work….

it hasn’t been applied properly

On this website we provide guidelines for applying EM. In some cases, these guidelines cannot achieve the desired result. Keep in mind that every situation is unique and several factors can play a role. Adjust the dosage and/or method of application and see if you notice a difference. If you have any doubts or need advice, you can always contact us.

Meeting the EM microbes

Phototrophic organisms

These independently operating micro-organisms are the most important in EM. All mother cultures contain at least 2 or 3 species of these microbes. It is said that they emit certain kinds of frequencies or energies which effect nearby organisms and matter. They can have a ‘profound’ effect on regulating or encouraging nearby bio-chemical processes in a most beneficial way. However in some EM mothercultures you’ll find more than in others. These microbes get energy from sunlight, warmth from the soil and different kinds of radiation. The will make nutrients from root secretions, organic matter and toxic gasses. Their metabolism produces products which are immediately available to plants. They can bind nitrogen and they help with a more efficient use of sunlight. Moreover they have anti-oxidative properties, which strengthens the plants immune system. If an EM batch is only made with molasses and water, they’ll feed themselves on the dead yeast and lactic acid bacteria bodies. At the beginning of the EM activating process they will stay ‘dormant’ until the process ages and the yeast and lactic acid bacteria will die off. So it’s highly advisable to wake these beneficial babies up by adding ingredients such as fishmeal or bran. And/or expose your batch to fluorescent light for the first 2 to 3 weeks.

Lactic acid bacteria

Known for their process of converting milk into yoghurts or cheeses and their sterilising effects. When digesting sugars and carbohydrates and other similar elements, which are produced by yeast and phototrophic bacteria, these microbes produce lactic acid which helps the fermentation process significantly. Many species have a regenerative (syntropic) and anti-oxidative effect. They work well together with other micro-organisms, but suppress harmful micro-organisms. They accelerate the decomposition process of organic matter. And they have the ability to suppress the fusarium-multiplication (a fungi which causes root disease). EM-1 contains from 3 to 15 different species of lactic acid bacteria and are an essential part of the EM culture. 


Famously known for the production of breads and beer. Yeast produces anti-microbial and other valuable products for plant growth. These products are made out of sugars and amino-acids which are produced by photosynthetic bacteria, organic matter and root secretion. Their metabolism products are food for lactic acid bacteria and actinomyces.


They produce antimicrobial products, which suppress harmful fungi and bacteria. These products are made from amino-acids, obtained from phototrophic bacteria and organic matter. They have the ability to coexist with the phototrophic bacteria, whom both are responsible for increasing microbial activity in the soil.

Fermenting fungi

They break down organic matter quickly which causes less odor and prevents infestation by harmful insects and maggots.

[*1] Please note that we do not accuse these microorganisms being morally bad, but more in the sense of creating less favorable conditions for life. We believe all microorganisms have their place and role to play in nature.