STAGE 7: The Formulations

Appropriate formulation is required for a high-quality product.  Microorganisms need tobe well protected to survive in high numbers in the formulation under variable andpotentially harsh conditions during storage.  During storage, high temperature istypically the most detrimental condition for the microorganisms.    Formulations are broadly divided into those using solid carriers or liquidformulations.  Choice of formulation depends […]

STAGE 6: The Methods

Microbial inoculants are typically applied to row crops at planting either by seed treatment or in-furrow delivery.  Seed treatment is most widely used on a commercial scale because it is suited to management practices and requires less material than in-furrow delivery.  Foliar application to coincide with certain plant development stages is also increasing in practice.  […]

Biologicals Regulation: The Right Way

We talked to Bruce Caldwell, CEO of 3Bar Bio, and Jane Fife, 3Bar Bio’s CTO, about regulating biologicals and what we should be considering as this topic gets more attention. Bruce, with many years in R&D and product development, tends to focus first on the more business-oriented, commercialization issues. Jane, with a PhD in agricultural engineering, […]

STAGE 5: The Delivery

Plant growth-promoting inoculants typically have the greatest effect when applied early in plant development.  When applied with the seed, there is a period of time before the seed germinates that the inoculant must be able to survive before root exudates become available.  Microbial inoculants have the best chance to survive and compete in the soil […]

STAGE 4: The Environment

Most microbial products commercially available in the United States have been developed for a mass market, and no microbial inoculant has proved to be effective in all environments.  Through research, the survival and persistence of microbes in the soil, has been shown to be affected by extreme soil pH, desiccation, nutrient deficiencies, salinity/alkalinity, extreme temperatures, […]

STAGE 3: N-fixing Essentials

Nitrogen is one of the most crucial elements for biological systems and is required in large amounts by plants for efficient growth. Recently, there have been questions about the benefits of N-fixing biologicals. By thinking in ROI terms, we see increased net returns. Reducing fertilizer N rates can result in improved ROI due to lower […]

STAGE 2: The System

Nitrogen is one of the most crucial elements for biological systems and is required in largeamounts by plants for efficient growth. Farmers use more than 100 million metric tons of Nfertilizer each year, which consists of ammonia, nitrates, and other nitrogen-containingcompounds. Increasing use of N fertilizers in agriculture is negatively affecting theenvironment and soil through […]

Fixing our Perspective on N-Fixing – FULL ARTICLE

Fixing our perspective on N-fixing A summary of recent multi-state studies by university researchers (Performance of Selected Commercially Available Asymbiotic N-fixing Products in the North Central Region) reports a low rate of positive benefits using commercial biological N-fixing products marketed to US row crops.   Unbiased, third-party studies like these are critical for new technologies – […]


History of N-fixing Microbial products have enormous potential to provide alternative, more sustainable approaches for agricultural production while protecting the environment.  However, what has been proven in research is not fully translating to consistent, beneficial results in the field – which is causing some to question their effectiveness.  Symbiotic biological N-fixing products for legumes (referred […]