Bokashi is a fermentation process of anaerobic composting. It originates in Japan, where ancient farmers would bury their organic waste in the ground. That ground was rich with microorganisms, but deficient in air which led to fermentation. Once the waste was fermented, they would bury the product in their crop fields. Those fields in turn, began to out perform the non-bokashi fields, and there you have it.
Modern Bokashi composting really began once “Effective Microorganisms” were discovered, also in Japan, by Dr. Teruo Higa. He inoculated bran with his patented mix of beneficial microorganisms, added it to the ancient method, and modern Bokashi was born.
Bokashi is really a 2 step process. The first step happens in a container. The food scraps are prepared and layered in the container with the specially inoculated bran. The second step happens in the ground. Once the container is full and the contents sufficiently fermented, it is emptied into the ground and covered. There it quickly decomposes into useable, nutrient dense, soil food.
Click on the links below to follow along my families experiment in an effort to reduce our waste. After 1 month we are on track to divert over 400 pounds of food waste from the landfill!
I experimented with a 5 Gal pail and a homemade plunger. If you would like to go the technical route, which I recommend, check out the pail below. The drainage spout on the bottom is the key factor. Don’t forget the bran! You will need that!