We’re happy to introduce a way to recycle all your food and plant waste safely and effectively. Enter the EM Bokashi composting system. Bokashi is a Japanese term for "fermented." We ferment the organic matter to produce a type of organic compost that helps build healthy soil and grow nutrient-rich foods. We use EM•1® in the fermentation process because it is teeming with live microbes, enzymes, trace minerals, and vitamins that help other beneficial life grow, making the Bokashi garden compost method more efficient and nutrient rich.
Why use food waste to make Bokashi garden compost?
Food wastes are often disposed of in landfills as garbage. 40-60% of landfill space is made up of food waste. Since food waste is wet and contains lots of nutrients, it starts to rot quickly, producing odors and attracting pests. Fermenting, or preserving, prevents the rotting process.The fermented Bokashi garden compost acts as a fertilizer or nutrient-rich humus, making it an easy and sustainable recycling method.
What type of food can be used in Bokashi?
All leftovers, vegetable peels, egg shells, coffee grinds, pizza crusts, pasta and pastries can go into the Bokashi compost bucket.
Compost vs Bokashi - what's the difference?
Compost is an aerobic process that requires proper maintenance and can be very labor intensive, especially when done by hand. Compost needs to maintain a temperature around 140º-160ºF to be effective. This is done by turning the materials often through the process of compost aeration. This is done by turning the materials often through the process of compost aeration. These gases can include methane, carbon dioxide, and ammonia.
Generally, meat and dairy products are not added to compost piles because they can attract pests such as rats, birds, skunks, and raccoons. Fats from the meats can rot and produce hydrogen sulfide and butyric acid that attract flies and pest insects. These odors are also a result of improper turning.
When made properly, organic compost makes a great soil amendment and is also very useful as a mulch. The nutrients in compost can replace quite a bit of fertilizer needs as well as supply carbon and beneficial microorganisms like several types of fungi.
Garden Composting with Bokashi
With the EM Bokashi composting system, the food waste does not rot. Bokashi is easy to make.All you need is a Bokashi compost bucket and some EM Bokashi bran. The materials in the bucket do not need to be heated or turned. The microbes in the EM Bokashi become active from the moisture in the food wastes and begin to digest the sugars left in the foods right at room temperature. This fermentation process does not produce compost odor. This is because the dominant microbes in this case are from EM•1® Microbial Inoculant. The fermentation does, however, need to be done in a completely airtight container. This is where the buckets come in to play.
Food wastes are added to the bucket and coated with the EM Bokashi bran. The bucket is then closed tightly and allowed to ferment for about two weeks. Once fermented, there are no foul odors, microbes have grown, and nutrients have been converted into plant-available nutrients such as amino acids and vitamins.
The fermented food waste is then either buried in the soil, fed to worms, or added to a compost pile. Since the fermented food waste still needs to break down or be digested by worms and other microbes, it cannot be used as mulch. Worms eat bacteria so it is an excellent food source for them and worm castings are beneficial for plants. To prevent rotting, the food waste will need to be covered with six or more inches of soil.
Bokashi bran can also be used to stabilize food waste, replace clay cat litter, amend soil, clean waterways (rivers, lakes and ponds), and soak up spills.
Schools around the world use EM•1® Bokashi as part of a food waste recycling program to recycle wastes, grow fresh vegetables for their school lunches, learn about gardening, and save on disposal costs.