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Production of effective microorganism using halal-based sources: A review



Contemporary Malaysia faces rapid population growth that will increase competition for land and water resources for industrial use and urban growth. Solutions are needed to increase agricultural productivity to combat hunger and poverty. Since the agriculture sector has long been the backbone of the economy, the nation has found effective microorganism (EM) technology that has potential use in developing a sustainable agriculture sector. Malaysia is recognized as a modern Islamic country; citizens have concerns regarding halal issues associated with EM ingredients, which are not clearly mentioned by the manufacturer. Hence, a halal-based source is suggested in utilization of EM technology. This paper presents the development and applications of EMs that are not restricted to the agriculture system.
M.M.A Abdullah1
1School of Material Engineering
University Malaysia Perlis (UniMAP)
Kangar, Perlis, Malaysia
A.H.M. Radzi2, N.A.M. Saleh2, S.Z. Kamal2,
N.D Yaacob2
2School of Bioprocess Engineering
University Malaysia Perlis (UniMAP)
Kangar, Perlis, Malaysia
Abstract Contemporary Malaysia faces rapid population
growth that will increase competition for land and water
resources for industrial use and urban growth. Solutions are
needed to increase agricultural productivity to combat hunger
and poverty. Since the agriculture sector has long been the
backbone of the economy, the nation has found effective
microorganism (EM) technology that has potential use in
developing a sustainable agriculture sector. Malaysia is
recognized as a modern Islamic country; citizens have concerns
regarding halal issues associated with EM ingredients, which are
not clearly mentioned by the manufacturer. Hence, a halal-based
source is suggested in utilization of EM technology. This paper
presents the development and applications of EMs that are not
restricted to the agriculture system.
Keywords: component; effective microorganisms (EM);
agriculture; halal-based source
In recent years, concerned about feeding a rapidly
growing human population, Malaysia has jeopardized the
environment and its natural resources, which are already under
great stress. Consequently, off-farm input (e.g., fertilizers,
pesticides) plays an important role in food production.
However, Peter Triantafillou, a lecturer at the Royal
Veterinary and Agricultural University in Denmark, reported
that the intensive pesticide used in Malaysian agriculture has
caused serious public health problems, and it has been heavily
criticized for more than two decades. However, the
government remains committed to the use of these pesticides
as part of its economic development [1]. A recent study by
Shah and Devkota also revealed that pesticide residues had
contaminated soil in the grounds of a nearby school and were
having adverse health effects on local school children [2].
Other factors such as excessive soil erosion, the associated
transport of sediment, and improper treatment of human and
animal waste also has caused serious environmental and social
problems throughout the world. Hence, the public has become
increasingly concerned about possible health hazards due to
serious future uncertainty about water quality. All these
problems need solutions to maintain and possibly enhance
    
of food for humankind and all forms of life on earth.
Considering such a point of view, the answer may lie in the
widespread use of effective microorganisms (EM). The
concept of effective microorganisms was developed by
Japanese horticulturist Teuro Higa of the University of
Ryukyus in Japan. He reported in the 1970s that a combination
of approximately 80 different microorganisms is capable of
positively influencing decomposing organic matter such that it
reverts to a life-promoting process. His studies have shown
that EM may have a number of applications, including
agriculture, livestock, gardening, landscaping, composting,
bioremediation, cleaning septic tanks, algae control, and
household uses [3].
Successful use of EM depends on suitable formulation
techniques. EM can show better performance if it is mixed
with suitable ingredients that act as nutrients, adhesives, or
wetting agents [4]. Consequently, researchers have shown
considerable interest in the possible use of inoculants of
beneficial microorganisms and organic fertilizer (e.g. animal
manure) in development of agriculture. Hanekon highlighted
the potential of using EM to treat pig manure prior to feeding
it to fish [5]. Thus, predominantly Muslim consumers who are
constrained in handling pig manure are dealing with the
halalness of the product.
Today, Muslim consumers are paying increased attention to
their halalness. This is very good in terms of Islamic practices
and faith. Hence, it has long been a stated goal of the
Malaysian government to establish Malaysia as a global halal
hub for the promotion, distribution, and production of halal
products and services to Muslim countries throughout the
world [6]. According to Mian and Chaudry, if genetic
modifications improve product flavor, color, texture,
composition, etc., but do not alter the way such products are
metabolized by the human body, and are otherwise safe to
consume, there might not be any acceptance problems by
Muslims [7]. In this context, the use of genetically modified
organisms such as EM has raised concerns about their
halalness. To date, no research has been carried out on halal
issues regarding the production of EM.
Professor Higa, University of Ryukyus, Okinawa, Japan,
developed the first batch of effective microorganisms, which
eventually came to called EM, in 1980 [3]. It is available in a
liquid concentrate form and produced through a natural
process of fermentation; it is not chemically synthesized or
genetically engineered. EM is a combination of various
beneficial, naturally occurring microorganisms mostly used
for or found in food. It is produced in vats from cultivation of
more than 80 varieties of microorganisms. The
microorganisms are drawn from 10 genera belonging to 5
different families: Lactobacillus plantarum, L. casei and
Streptoccus lactis (lactic acid bacteria), Rhodopseudomonas
palustrus and Rhodobacter spaeroides (photosynthetic
bacteria), Saccharomyces cerevisiae and Candida utilis
(yeasts), Streptomyces albus and S. griseus (actinomycetes),
and Aspergillus oryzae, Penicillium sp. and Mucor hiemalis
(fermenting fungi) [8].
Originally, EM was available in a dormant state and
required activation before application. Activation involved the
addition of water and jaggery (molasses) to dormant EM. The
mixture then fermented at ambient temperature for 8 to 10
days. During the period of activation, a white layer of
actinomycetes forms on the top of the solution as does a
pleasant smell. The pH is also a determining factor and should
be below 4.0 [4].
Based on previous research, most of the raw materials of
EM liquid concentrate are not clearly stated and identified
since they have been manufactured by different companies. In
particular, there is no certainty regarding the sources of EM
and their halalness. Considering such a point of view, these
unclear circumstances might give rise to halal questions
among predominantly Muslim consumers. Thus, developing
EM from halal-based sources (e.g., fruits) is suggested rather
than importing EM stock from Japan.
EM technology involves growing, applying, managing, and
re-establishing high populations of beneficial microorganisms
in an environment or system. The use of effective
microorganism technology has broadened in the last two
decades from agriculture to water treatment, odor control,
animal husbandry, human health, and numerous other
industrial treatments [9].
A. EM in Environmental Management
A major problem facing municipalities throughout the
world is the treatment, disposal and/or recycling of solid
wastes. Solutions using EM developed in Okinawa in the
1970s have been used for environmental management [10]. In
countries such as Australia and many nations of Europe and
Asia     -based household and industrial
waste management products are used quite successfully. The
implementation of kitchen composting systems has helped to
manage kitchen waste and generated rich fertilizer, thus
eliminating the need for chemical fertilizers [11]. There is also
investigation into the potential of EM to lower the lipid
content of lipid-rich food debris wastewater [12].
Since clean water resources are crucial to human health and
the natural environment, and play a key role in economic
growth and development, EM technology may help mitigate a
water crisis by purifying water for recycling. EM acts to purify
wastewater by devouring all of its toxins and the stench of
solid waste is eliminated almost immediately. Therefore,
Kurihara described that EM mud balls adopted locally are
emerging as one of the environmental solutions to reduce
water pollutants and thus improve water quality in the rivers
and drains [13]. In addition, EM also has the ability to absorb
toxic gases (e.g., hydrogen sulphide and ammonia) and
convert them into organic acids, thereby eliminating their foul
odor [14]. Thus, the environment of barns and animal hygiene
are both improved. Moreover, after the recent natural disaster
in Asia, the tsunami, EM technology was used very
successfully to mitigate the smells. EM technology proved
effective in odor control and sanitation management.
Composting also has been studied, mostly in treating
municipal sewage sludge and solid wastes. Sprinkling an EM
solution on material accelerates the breakdown of organic
matter and thus requires less time than the natural process of
composting. Use of EM solutions in biofertilizer preparation
also helps to increase the number of beneficial
microorganisms in the soil; this in turn improves the soil's
microbial health and promotes a healthy environment for
plants [15]. In another way, Freitag also highlighted the
introduction of EM into anaerobic treatment facilities to
reduce the unpleasant by-products of the decomposition and
the production of residual sludge [10]. G. Qasim and T. Akbar
also proved that EM has the potential to deoxidize heavy
metals and convert them into organo-metallic compounds,
which are not harmful to human or animal health [16][17]
B. EM in Agriculture
According to EM Research Philippines, chicken or hog
manure is one of the materials used to prepare EM organic
fertilizer [18]. Therefore, animal manure fermented with EM
has high nutrient value and is pathogen-free. Numerous EM
application experiments also have been conducted on various
soils, grain and oil crops, fruit trees and vegetables; when
studied as an additive in poultry and livestock feeds in
Jiangsu, Zhejiang, Jiangxi and Henan Provinces, researchers
found that when applied with manure EM can reduce the need
for chemical fertilizers and pesticides, which improves a
Research has shown that the inoculation of EM cultures to
the soil/plant ecosystem can improve soil quality, soil health,
and the growth, yield, and quality of crops. EM is used in
agriculture via a number of methods. It is inoculated into the
rhizosphere (around the root) with the intention to regenerate
soil, increase yields, or improve nutrient content of the crop.
Sangakkara has reported that EM application increases the
release of nutrients from organic matter, enhances
photosynthesis and protein activity, and provides for better
penetration of roots by improving physical properties of soils
[19]. Research on papaya in Brazil [20], herbage grasses in
Holland [21] and Austria [22], vegetables in New Zealand and
Sri Lanka [23], and apples in Japan [24] illustrate this
phenomenon clearly.
EM has microbes with an acid-producing nature; they have
the ability to maintain fitness and enhance the digestion,
nutrient absorption, and assimilation abilities of animals when
it is added to feeds and drinking water. Therefore, Li Wei-
Jionge found that EM contains many naturally occurring
beneficial microorganisms, which are both oxybiotic and
anaerobic microbes [25]. After entering the body of animals as
foodstuffs, these microbes may multiply rapidly and they not
only check the growth of pathogenic microbes but also form
the normal microbial group within the host body to produce its
main vitamins, provide nutrients, and prevent attacks from
pathogens. With better-feed utilization and improved animal
well-being, there is a marked improvement in the growth of
animals. In Pakistan, EM also appeared to be a safe growth
promoter for chickens and carried no associated risks when
applied to promote growth and potentiate the immune
response in chickens [26].
In 1990, research on nature farming using EM was started
in Malaysia. Sharifuddin indicated that the use of organic
amendments, particularly chicken dung, with EM can
significantly increase the yield of production of sweet corn
and leaf mustard [27]. Crop residues and animal wastes also
can be effectively composted to produce biofertilizers for
development of agriculture [28][29].
Perceiving bacteria as dangerous is now turning toward
greater awareness of the microbial world as a fundamental
element of life. Since the present natural environment is so
deteriorated, more EM technologies are being used in
developing the agriculture and environment sectors. EM finds
fairly wide application in many areas of human society
because of its eco-friendly nature, and it requires less inputs
   
nature, strengthens the intrinsic power of agricultural soil,
minimizes the loss of energy in recycling of farm products,
suppresses the incidence of insect pests and plant diseases, and
produces more foods that enhance human health. Thus, EM
technology can solve agricultural problems and contribute to
food production and environmental protection in Malaysia.
Halal products are fast gaining worldwide recognition. This
is not merely because the number of Muslims is growing, but
more significantly, because halal is being recognized as a new
benchmark for safety and quality assurance. Producers of EM
need to understand halal-based sources as well as associated
     There
is no compromise when it comes to the question of halal for
Muslims, as it is one of the tenets of Islam. Thus, the idea to
develop EM from halal-based sources is quite interesting to
introduce the concept of halal in EM technology to sustain
agriculture and the environment.
This study was funded by King Abdul Aziz City Science
and Technology (KACST). We would like to extend our
appreciation to the Green Concrete @UniMAP and the School
of Material Engineering, Universiti Malaysia Perlis
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... These products can consist of more than 80 species of microorganisms with different functions that are suitable for both human and animal consumption. The microorganisms used in EM TM products act through mutual biological synergy, and those included in probiotics include lactic acid bacteria (Lactobacillus plantarum, L. casei, Streptococcus lactis), photosynthesizing bacteria (Rhodopseudomonas palustrus, Rhodobacter apaeroides), yeasts (Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Candida utilis), actinomycetes (Streptomyces albus, S. gipseus, Actinomycetes), and fermenting fungi (Aspergillus oryzae, Penicillum sp., Mucor hiemalis) (Condor et al. 2007, Mustafa et al. 2011, Rapatsa and Moyo 2013, Qui et al. 2009). EM TM products are applied in agriculture (soil remediation, plant production, agriculture, food processing, storage), environmental protection (e.g., water revitalization, water body and watercourse purification), municipal waste management (wastewater treatment, landfills, composting plants), households (home, garden, cesspool), human and veterinary medicine, fish farming, and many other areas. ...
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Products containing effective microorganisms (EM TM ) use microorganisms to work in the environment in which they are applied. EM TM is used in many countries worldwide, mainly in agriculture, including in aquaculture, and in environmental protection. Fish farmers use these products to stimulate effective growth and conditioning and as immunity enhancers. The aim of the study was to evaluate the effect of EM TM Probiotyk (Greenland, Poland) on the development of humoral non-specific resistance in pikeperch ( Sander lucioperca ) in the initial stage of rearing in recirculating aquaculture systems (RAS). The experimental diet was administered for 28 days with 0% (control group), 2%, and 4% EM TM supplementation. The results from the humoral parameters (Lys, TP, Ig) showed no statistical differences. The only statistically significant difference was noted in Cer for the 4% group. Non-specific humoral-mediated immunity in fish plays a key role in defense against damaging factors. Pikeperch is a fish used for restocking open waters, where fish can be subjected to agrotechnical treatments, including EM TM . The results permitted estimating the potential risks of using EM TM in aquaculture.
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Many models of economic growth and sustainable development like circular economy, doughnut economy, and sharing economy were articulated to address the global issues including poverty, climate change, and inequity. However, these models were not informed by traditional value-based worldviews. This systematic literature review aims to gain insights on the different models, practices, and drivers for Islamic sustainable development to inform a new discourse for sustainability. Besides, it intends to define emerging themes in sustainable development and explore the viability for adopting Islamic development models to promote inclusive, pro-poor, and human-centred development. The methodology adopted is systematic literature review to identify sustainability models, practices, and drivers in Islam. Policy recommendations and strategic directions are outlined based on the review.
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A bakery is a business that bakes flour-based foods, including bread, cookies, cakes, pastries, and pies, and sells them. Some bakeries are also categorized as large scale, medium scale, and small scale. Halal embraces all food category; bakery product can satisfy the challenge and opportunity of halal food segment market. The small-scale bakery will benefit from creating a halal certification to attract new customers. The first stage of submission for halal certification is identifying Halal Control Points (HCP) of materials and production. The material tracing uses a decision tree. The purpose of this study is to identify HCP in materials and production processes and provide alternative improvements. Identification of HCP in material decision trees to determine contains non-HCP (halal) material, HCP material, and haram (forbidden) material. Happy Cake bakery uses 75% non-HCP (halal) materials and 25% HCP (noncertified halal) materials from 80 ingredients. Bakery Canggi Fully has 83.3% halal materials and 16.6% noncertified halal materials from 24 ingredients. Bakery MacCheese has 79% of halal materials and 21% of noncertified halal materials from 43 ingredients. The decision tree makes it very easy to identify the halal status of ingredients. The HCP ingredients need to be replaced with clearly halal ingredients. Substitution of HCP material to halal-certified ingredients may affect production costs, product quality, and profit. Therefore, it is necessary to choose a suitable halal material. Halal certification requires a high commitment of small-scale bakery businesses.
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With the increasing demand in agriculture it has become important for us to increase theproductivity by using various fertilizers insecticides Pesticides .But with the tremendous use of theseproducts the soil has been affected badly because of the depletion in the essential minerals of the soil. So toovercome this problem it has become important for all of us touse a different remedy for the production ofvarious biofertilizers. The production if such biofertilizers from various microorganisms was studied from thiswork.
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HALAL-HUB is a concerted effort among the Islamic organizations/bodies such as Halal manufacturers, Halal traders, buyers, and consumers from all over the world. To be the central trading hub for Halal products, Malaysia must intelligently market itself and achieved Halal-hub main objective of providing a credible platform in connecting global Halal supply-chain and certification for Halal Assurance. Existing literature provides a number of examples that illustrate how supply chain strategy and marketing intelligence improve firm’s performance. The literature, however, lacks theoretical support to facilitate an understanding of the magnitude of supply change strategies, structure of halal assurance system and marketing intelligence to support the scope of relational of Halal-hub. This article uses the strategy-structure-performance paradigm to position Halal Hub relative to the nature of relationships within the broader supply chain strategies, Halal Assurance systems and marketing intelligence a firm employs. The framework presented is a first step towards a more holistic and theory-based approach to understanding the link between, supply chain, halal assurance system, marketing intelligence and Halal-hub. This framework also is designed to serve as a basis for future research in this area.
Organic manures are derived from plant, animal and human residues. In addition to supplying principal elements to the soil, they promote microbial activity in the soil and improve its structure, aeration, and water holding capacity, which in turn improves the soil capabilities to respond to inputs. This paper deals with the composting of kitchen wastes using effective microorganisms (EM), which results in a higher decomposition of organic matter and no odor during process. This produces a high quality compost, which contributes toward sustainable development.
The influence of effective microorganisms (EM), a commercially available microbial inoculant containing yeasts, fungi, bacteria and actinomycetes, was evaluated in field trials of commercially produced, irrigated vegetable crops on “organic” farms in Canterbury, New Zealand during 1994–1995, and in a laboratory incubation. EM plus molasses were both applied, at 10 L ha in 10,000 L ha water, three times to the onions, twice to the peas and seven times to the sweetcorn. EM plus molasses increased the onion yield by 29% and the proportion of highest grade onions by 76%. EM plus molasses also increased pea yields by 31% and sweetcorn cob weights by 23%. A four week incubation at 30°C of loamy sand and 1% w/w pasture litter had treatments including a control, glucose, and EM plus glucose, and captured respired carbon (C) using NaOH traps. By the end of the incubation the glucose treatment had respired 38% more C than the control. The EM treatment respired an additional 8% more C than the glucose treatment. Using EM stimulated C mineralization in the laboratory incubation, but a corresponding increase in mineralization of organic nitrogen, phosphorus and sulphur was not measured.
The production potential of pig manure on fish growth and water quality in integrated pig-fish systems was investigated using effective micro-organisms (Kyusei EMTM) with or without formulated pig feeds and Anolyte. Both Anolyte and EM effectively reduced faecal bacterial loads in pig manure. EM positively affected pig growth but this was obscured with the introduction from the second month of growth hormone and antibiotics in the pig diets. The application of manure from both treated and untreated pigs had a positive effect on fish yields, improving the feed conversion ratio of the fish to below 2. The EM-A containing manure, however, significantly improved the overall FCR producing a value of 1.4. The application of EM-A containing pig manure also had a marked effect on some faecal organism counts in the manure and in the water of the fish ponds, but also reduced the somatic coliphage numbers significantly. Faecal Streptococci and E. coli found in the kidneys, gills, spleen and liver of the Mozambique tilapia which were used as pond fish, may well have a medium to long term negative implication for the use of animal manures containing faecal bacteria. This aspect required serious attention in future research where agricultural waste products of this nature are used to stimulate fish pond production.
Apples were grown in a study using nature farming practices, including organic fertilizer to supply nutrients, microbial inocu-lants for biocontrol of pest insects, and low- or non-pesticides measures. When low- or non-pesticide measures were adopted, the numbers of pest insects increased accordingly; however, the populations of beneficial organisms and natural predators of pest insects also increased. Even though the reduction in pesticide use caused some fruit damage, the enhanced biocontrol of pest insects by increased numbers of natural predator insects more than compensated for the damage. Thus, low- or non-pesticide nature farming practices were cost-effective because they increased biocontrol of pest insects and decreased the amount of pesticide needed and the cost of application.
UN FAO estimates that half a million tonnes of obsolete pesticides are in storage world-wide. In Nepal there are 74.5 metric tonnes of obsolete pesticides stored in warehouses in many places of the country. Many stocks are located near farm fields, human settlements, schools or water sources. Lack of health related studies and very limited studies on environmental contamination by obsolete pesticides led to undertake this study, which focuses on health and environmental impacts of obsolete pesticides stored in a warehouse at Amlekhgunj, Bara district, Nepal. The present study found an interrelation between the pesticide residue level in soil samples of a nearby school-ground and the health impacts seen on the students of the same school. The government and concerned agencies should take out the initiatives to quick and safe disposal of obsolete pesticides and also take care that no new stock will be accumulated in the future.