In the past couple months, we have been getting acquainted with EM®, a product that is heavily used here chez GIC Sondason. We spray it on crops, we feed it to livestock, we use it in the bathrooms to minimize odors, and our mentor Christophe even drinks a capful every now and then. So what is this miracle product, you ask?
What is EM®?
“EM®” is short for Effective Microorganisms, an innovative technology that employs beneficial micro-organisms in manufacturing natural and organic products used for a variety of purposes. Microorganisms, which naturally work to restore balance and health to ecosystems, can remove harmful toxins and restore regenerative balance to affected environments, whether the “environment” in question is the soil, an animal, or the human body. Most notably for Utamtsi and GIC Sondason’s purposes, EM® is an incredibly effective product for organic agriculture and livestock production.
Where does EM® come from?
EM® products originated in Japan after being discovered by Dr. Teruo Higa, a professor of horticulture. EM® products have been on the market since 1983 and is now produced in over 156 countries. The branch of EM® in Cameroon is still relatively new, but since 2005, more than 5,000 farmers have started using EM® technology.
How is it relevant to our work in Cameroon?
The farmers of GIC Sondason here in Cameroon use EM® technology in the production of organic coffee and vegetables on their farms. As many of them also incorporate livestock rearing into their farms as part of the organic paradigm, EM® is also used in these cases. Furthermore, EM® can be incorporated in the production of biochar, a soil fertility enhancer that GIC Sondason has recently started manufacturing.
Morin Kamga, our boss and co-founder of Utamtsi, was introduced to EM® while in Germany. Some of Utamtsi’s German clients were using it in their own gardens, while others using it for a variety of personal health remedies. The German delegation that came to Cameroon recently was composed primarily of EM® advocates and users. Pit Mau, the editor of a German quarterly called EM® Journal, even gave a presentation on EM® at the 2nd Annual Conference on Sustainable Development at the University of Dschang. A member of the German delegation even gave me a special Bokashi Oil Rub from Indonesia for a burn I had- needless to say, it healed nice and quickly!
Other uses of EM®:
- Production of organic fertilizers and seed treatments
- Livestock/poultry rearing and aquaculture
- Health and beauty products i.e. oral and dental care
- Probiotic cleanses & digestive health
- Odor control (household and with livestock)
- Sewer systems
- EM® for Pets- food, health, and odor control
- Decontamination of natural and man-made disaster sites
- Bioremediation of toxic and hazardous waste sites and spills
- Recycling of quality drinking water
How can I try out EM® products in the United States?
If EM® is something that interests you, use this link to find out where you can purchase EM® close to you! You can also purchase and read more online via Teraganix and Emerald Earth.