Why you shouldn't get a Bokashi Bin?

Are you looking for a composter for your kitchen? Bokashi composting bin seems an easy solution. It looks like a neat cooler dispensing drink. The size is just right for your daily food scraps. It's also much cheaper than a garden composter. It claims you can even compost dairy, meat and fish with Bokashi bin. 

My personal experiences with Bokashi Bin were awful. 

Some Youtubers even told you to get two Bokashi bins. Then you can use them alternately to contain your everyday food scraps. 

But I got two Bokashi bins and I found them useless. Here is why: 


1. Bokashi is NOT composting. 

Compost is the process in which bacteria decompose the food scraps and release nitrogen from food scraps. Your food scraps,  or any ever-living organisms must have carbon and nitrogen in their body. Bacteria use enzyme to break the food down until it disappear. They take the carbon as energy and use the nitrogen to build their body cells. When bacteria die, the nitrogen will be released to soil and steadily available to plants. The whole process needs oxygen. The end products is humus, the long, complex carbon chain that can't be decomposed anymore by bacteria. Humus staying in the soil works as spongy to absorb water and retain the ions, making your soil healthy and rich. 

Few weeks after I started a Bokashi pile, they are still food scraps, not compost


This is finished compost. Can you tell the difference?


Bokashi bin just  "pickle" your food scraps. After the process is done, you still see the food scraps there. The Bokashi bacteria didn't decompose your food scraps at all. You need to keep the bin air-tight, because Bokashi uses anaerobic bacteria, if you let air in, aerobic bacteria will outcompete the anaerobic bacteria and the process will fail. 


2.  Bury the Bokashi pile underground for anaerobic decomposition may emit methane 

Bokashi can't transform your food scraps to compost or to humus so what can you do about them? After two weeks, you need to sort those pickled food scraps out from Bokashi Bin and bury them in the soil. If you don't have a garden, you still need to throw them to a dumpster. That's exactly what I did before having Bokashi Bins. So why bother myself running a Bokashi Bin? 

Yes, you can drip a bit "Bokashi Tea" or "Compost tea", but the benefits of it for your plants and soil are far from having real compost. Real compost will totally transform your soil by feeding the soil critters and enhancing the soil food web the natural way.  


3. Bokashi is terrible if you forget about them

I left my Bokashi bin on the balcony and forgot them. I guess it happens to many people. Here is how it looks: 

I forgot my Bokashi pile in the bin for two months. Still looks the same but smells like vomit.

It looks the same, right? But it smells like vomit. I mean it! The smell is disgusting! I finally need to sort them out, wash the bins and place them on second-hand market place.

Recap,  Bokashi Bins are cute because they look like coolers dispensing drinks, but they don't compost anything. After the process is done, you will NOT get any compost for your garden and plants. You just get the same food scraps that you put in two weeks ago. You need either to bury them, you never know how they do underground or just to dump them. 

 


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