EM 1 is a product on the market that is a special blend of efficient/effective micronutrients. It was created by Professor Dr. Teruo Higa who also coined the words “effective micro organism” and trademarked “EM”.
EM 1 contains many co-existing micro organisms versus the “LAB” we create in Korean Natural Farming which only contain the lactobacillus culture. The major groups of micro organisms in EM 1 is lactobacillus, yeast, and phototrophic bacteria.
EM-1 can be used for a multitude of applications including compost piles, odor reduction, water treatments and ponds, foliar sprays, garden bed treatments, and livestock operations.
EM-1 can be pricy from the stores or distributers. There is a procedure to “extend” the amount of EM-1 to increase the volume. This procedure is called “Activated EM”. That does not mean the EM is not activated from it’s original bottle, I believe the term “Activated” was eventually preferred over “Extended”.
By Activating/Extending the EM-1 you can increase the volume by 20 times which brings the cost down to a fraction of the original price. When creating Activated EM-1 you need to allow time for the fermentation and gather supplies for the procedure.
-Bucket/Buckets with lids
-Air locks (optional)
-non chlorinated water
-Cheese cloth and string
-Measure out the quantity of EM-1 that you desire to extend:
-Add equal part molasses. 1:1 ( EM-1: Molasses)
-Gently stir (wood/bamboo stick- not metal) in 20 parts non-chlorinated water. 1:20 (EM-1+Molasses: water)
-Let sit with cheese cloth fastened on top of bucket (without lid) for the first 24 hours to encourage some aerobic absorption.
-After 24 hours, secure on lids and airlocks to buckets for an aerobic fermentation process:
-store buckets in a dry, shaded space. Warmer temperatures is preferred for the fermentation process.
-Activated EM-1 is ready to use after 4 weeks of fermentation.
I have discovered that the information originally presented by EM 1 distributors about “Activating” EM has changed. The current information is listing that after adding the Molasses, the activated EM can be used in 4-7 days.
Further research has gathered that after adding the molasses and water for the “Activation”, the EM can be used immediately or within 4-7 days for the most active microbes. Additionally, the “Activated EM” should be completely used within one month.
-Foliar spray: 1:500 – 1:1000
-Compost piles: 1:50- 1:100
-A few ounces can be used in grey water systems, down drains, and in septic tanks for odor control.