Microbes – friend or foe? Nature & Environment Microbes often get a bad name. Whilst some of them do cause disease, others play vital roles in recycling nutrients in the soil to enable plants to grow, and in breaking down human waste. Without microbes, we would have no beer, no yoghurt, no coffee. That's quite impressive for something too small to see. This free course, Microbes friend or foe? sheds some light on them. The Open University The Open University Course text/html SG071_1 SG071_1 en-GB Copyright © 2016 The Open University