The Importance of Using Bio-Enhancers in Crop Production

As crop input prices continue to surprise with new highs in our turbulent world, one of the most mentioned “buzz-words” of the agricultural community has been the number of brand specific bio-enhancers and their potential agricultural benefits. In preparation for the 2023 growing season, it is important to remember that these products have the potential to help producers’ pocketbooks and provide a means to help care for the natural resources.

Nutrient use efficiency has never been more important to the individual grower as it is today, and this is where a bio-enhancer shines. With regulations targeting fertilizer application methods, as well as threatening the application altogether, these products can give one the opportunity to do more with one’s current program or even allow for a reduced approach. This potential increase in productivity translates into less nutrient loss in the form of off-target movement and a better return on investment through a more predictable and consistent mode of nutrient uptake by the target crop. 

Common Forms of Bio-Enhancers

  • In-Furrow Solutions – bio-enhancers applied in this fashion target the root zone and aid in nutrient uptake processes such as root interception and diffusion by the living microbes within the solution adhering to the roots as they grow.
  • Seed Treatments – a convenient mode of application, also targeting the root zone and adhering to the new growth of the young roots. Seed applied solutions are a great early season benefit, that under the right circumstances, may be a season long advantage.
  • Broadcast Applications – There are many forms within the broadcast application category including:
    • Biocatalysts are applied directly to one’s fertilizer and aid in the efficacy and chemical processes needed to turn into available forms for uptake.
    • Application of a solution directly sprayed onto leaf surfaces in-season.

There are many forms of chemistry at work in this type of an application, but all are working towards a common goal of creating a nutrient efficient crop.

There are many products on the market today that are classified as bio-enhancers, and all are designed to do something slightly different in the process of crop production. As with all new products, local research and data is vital to getting a glimpse of the individual product’s effectiveness in any geography, as product efficacy will vary.

Christian McGuire


Tripathi, V.K., Solomon, S. and Mishra, A. (2019). Organic crop production through bio-enhancers.  Proceedings of the International Multidisciplinary Academic Conference Malaysia 2019.

Legal Statements

ALWAYS READ AND FOLLOW PESTICIDE LABEL DIRECTIONS. Performance may vary, from location to location and from year to year, as local growing, soil and weather conditions may vary. Growers should evaluate data from multiple locations and years whenever possible and should consider the impacts of these conditions on the grower’s fields.

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