Updated: Feb 9
Bokashi bin composting is the most efficient way to compost if you're a city dweller or don’t have an outside space.
Here are the benefits of bokashi bin composting:
There are no bad odours
It doesn't attract animals or insects
It will convert into usable soil
There's no need to add water or anything other than bokashi bran
The end product has increased beneficial microbes
You decide how much you want to make
No manual labour or turning involved
It's an ongoing system
You can feed it to your worm bin
You can put meat dairy or acidic foods into it
You can use the liquid fertiliser
The finished product helps soil to hold a lot of water
You can buy the inoculant and make it yourself
Bokashi bran microbes are resilient and can adapt
What is Bokashi Bin Composting?
Bokashi bin composting is a process of converting kitchen scraps into a product.
The process consists of adding bokashi bran, a flaky substance, to your kitchen waste.
The bokashi bran and kitchen scraps ferment in an airtight environment for 2 weeks.
This creates a pre-compost that you dig into your soil. It will turn into compost after 2 more weeks or you could add garden lime and feed it to your worm bin.
1. There are no bad odours
Bokashi bran consists of beneficial bacterial that produce no smell. This is unlike the pungent smells that come from rotting food in a compost bin.
2. It doesn't attract animals or insects
The bokashi bin is an airtight container, it has to be in order for the fermentation process to begin.
This means no insects or animals can get into it. So don't worry about annoying neighbours or attracting unwanted guests to your apartment.
3. It's Easy
All you need to do is; open your bokashi bin, add food waste, add the bokashi bran, then close the lid.
4. It's Safe
Bokashi bran consists of bacteria you could find on a bottle of probiotics. Find out more in my article What's bokashi bran? | The Most Efficient Apartment Composting method
It’s safe to handle and all contained in the bin.
5. It will convert into usable soil
After the fermentation, your bokashi bin compost turns into pre-compost. It needs 1 more step before it turns into compost that you can use for your plants.
All you do is dig a hole in the soil, add the bokashi pre-compost to it and then it will turn into soil after 2 weeks.
Or, you could add the bokashi pre-compost to your worm bin and add garden lime to balance the acidity of the bokashi.
6. There's no need to add more water or anything other than food and bokashi bran
The bokashi bin must be airtight for it to work. This means water doesn't escape unless you open the tap and drain the leachate.
This is better than other composting methods, where water will escape in the air or drain into the ground.
7. The end product has increased beneficial microbes
The bokashi bran contains beneficial microbes. These microbes help improve the fertility of your soil and inhibit harmful pathogen.
Your finished bokashi compost is going to have all those beneficial microbes.
8. You decide how much you want you to make
You don't need to fill the bokashi bin to the top and you stop when you want to.
9. No manual labour or turning involved
Bokashi bin composting involves no turning or manual labour. You add the kitchen waste and bokashi bran and be on your merry way.
10. It's fast
A lot of bloggers says it takes 2 weeks, but this is a bit misleading. It takes two weeks to finish fermenting and then another 2 weeks in the ground.
This is faster than other composting methods, which can take months to finish.
11. It's an ongoing system
What I love about bokashi bin composting is that you can keep adding to it, until it's completed. So as you gain kitchen scraps, you’ll add it to the bin until you're ready to stop.
12. You can feed it to your worm bin
You can give your worms a bunch of your bokashi compost and add some garden lime to increase the alkalinity.
Your worms will eat this making a very rich mixture of worm castings and bokashi compost.
13. You can put meat, dairy and acidic foods into it.
You're bokashi bin will deal with any of the above. This is great if you want to move closer to that zero waste goal.
14. You can use the liquid fertiliser
Your bokashi bin has a tap that contains the accumulation of the liquid from the vegetables. This is a liquid fertilizer known as leachate.
You can dilute this in water and feed it to your garden.
15. The finished product helps soil hold a lot of water
Your compost is high in fertility meaning it will hold the water more.
This means less watering!
16. You can buy the inoculant and make it yourself
You can buy the liquid inoculant (called EM1) and add carbon like wheat bran or rice bran.
17. Bokashi Bran microbes are resilient and can adapt
The microbes used in bokashi bran are very intelligent. They adapt to dominate bad pathogens.
For example, they will produce more lactic acid to lower the PH. Sometimes they can lower the PH to below 4.0.
This prevents harmful pathogens that can't survive in a low ph environment.
Or, they can produce more antioxidants to inhibit pathogens.
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