Please use the menu on the left for answers to the most common Bokashi Questions
Bokashi is the Japanese term for "fermented organic matter" that has been fermented with EMs, molasses and water
Effective Microorganisms, or EMs is one of the most popular microbial technologies being used worldwide now.
EM was first discovered by Dr. Teruo Higa, professor of horticulture at the University of the Ryukyus in Okinawa, Japan and it's products have been on the market since 1983.
EMs are now produced in over 54 countries and consists of naturally occurring beneficial microorganisms. These microorganisms can easily be classified into three major groups: lactic acid bacteria (commonly found in dairy products), yeast (e.g. bread, beer), and phototrophic bacteria.
Sometimes a liquid is produced from the fermentation and drains into the bottom bucket.
The amount and colour of the liquid drained will depend on the type of foods you have put into the bucket. Fruit and vegetables tend to release more liquid than other foods. Do not be concerned if little or no liquid is produced.
You can compost almost every kitchen food waste including
fresh fruit and vegetables, prepared foods, cooked and uncooked meats and fish, cheese, eggs, bread, coffee grinds, tea bags, wilted flowers and tissues.
Do not included liquids such as milk and fruit juice, paper and plastic wrap or meat bones.
After you have waited for 2 weeks open the container and you will see that the food has been preserved like pickles. The following indicates the bucket has been a success:
Smell: Well fermented food organics should have a smell similar to cider vinegar or that of pickles.
Visual:Occasionally, particularly for longer periods of fermentation a white cotton-like fungi growth may appear on the surface. This shows that a good fermentation process has occurred.
Remember to drain the bucket juice regularly during the fermentation period.
Smell: A strong rancid or rotten smell indicates the process has failed.
Visual: The presence of maggots or black or blue-green fungi indicates that contamination has occurred and the process has not fermented but putrefied.
Why The Fermentation Process Wrong
The Bokashi Bucket composting system significantly accelerates the composting process of organic waste. Bokashi Compost is acidic when first dug in, but neutralizes after 7-10 days.
Be sure plant roots do not come directly into contact with the compost as it may burn the roots, particularly if the plants are very young. Fresh compost can be stressful to new plants so it is best to wait two weeks before planning you favourite veggies, flowers etc.
To prepare your soil before planting, dig a hole or trench approximately 20-25 cm deep. Add your fermented Bokashi Compost and mix in some soil. Cover with remaining soil. For established gardens, dig the holes around shrubs or between rows of trees.
If you have don't have space to dig a new hole every time you empty your bucket, you can create a "Bokashi compost heap" by burying a large bottomless plastic bucket with a good lid (30 litres and above is ideal) up to its neck. Mix a little soil to each batch of Bokashi Compost that you place into the bucket, and replace the lid.
You can use your Bokashi Compost in planter boxes, tubs or pots by placing it directly into the container for further fermentation. Fill 1/3 of the container with potting mix (new or used) then add the Bokashi Compost and mix with soil. Fill the remaining 1/3 of the container with potting mix and cover with a plastic bag to maintain anaerobic conditions.
Bacteria in the soil and waste will start to break down the food and after about 3 weeks all the food will have decomposed
The amount and colour of the Bokashi Juice produced will depend on the type of foods you have put into The Bokashi Bucket. Fruit and vegetables tend to release more liquid than other foods. Do not be concerned if little or no Bokashi Juice is produced.
Bokashi Juice can be use for:
The Garden - Bokashi Juice contains nutrients from the food waste and is alive with Effective Micro-organisms (EM) and makes a terrific fertiliser. To fertilise an existing garden or pot plants use 1 teaspoon to 2-3 litres of water and apply directly to the soil. For trees and shrubs use 2 teaspoons to 2-3 litres of water. Do not apply directly to foliage.
Around the House - Pour the concentrated Bokashi Juice directly into your kitchen and bathroom drains, toilets or septic systems. The Effective Micro-organisms (EM) will help to prevent algae build-up and control odour. It will also help to clean up our waterways by competing with harmful bacteria.
Bokashi Juice cannot be stored and must be used within 24 hours after draining from the bucket
Wash the bucket with water at the end of each batch. Do not use chlorine based cleaner
If you have further questions you can email us or if we are online (usually evenings) you can chat with us direct
Alternatively you can visit our Forum, and get some helpful advice there
Please remember - that although worms don't carry any know diseases,
its always advisable to wear gloves and wash your hands after handling them or the food waste.