Bokashi Bin


How to Bokashi

Step 1: Place a 3-4 centimeter layer organic waste into the top bucket and then cover the waste evenly with approximately one handful of bokashi activator.
Step 2: Squash down to exclude air (potato mashers are handy for this)
Step 3: Replace the Bokashi bucket lid, ensuring the lid of the bokashi bucket is tightly secured in place.
Step 4: Remember to drain off the liquid (liquified grass essence) that accumulates in the bucket base daily, other-wise it will start to smell.
Step 5: Repeat steps 1 to 4 until the bokashi bin is full. Only add waste once per day.
Step 6: When the bucket is full, top it up with a generous layer of bokashi activator and let the contents ferment for another 10-14 days, ensuring it is kept in a cool shady area. Continue to drain off the liquid daily as it will continue to produce liquid during the finishing process. Its handy to have 2 bokashi bins so you can continue to compost your waste.
Step 7: Bury the fermented contents of the bokashi bucket in the garden or in a working compost bin to complete the composting process. You can plant directly on top of the buried bokashi compost.

Setting up your Bokashi Bin

You will need:

  • A Bokashi Bucket—commercially available, or if you are even a little bit handy, you can make your own.
  • Bokashi Activator Mix—commercially available or you can make your own
  • Organic waste

What to put in your Bokashi Bin:

  • Ffresh fruit and vegetables
  • Prepared foods
  • Cheese, eggs
  • Coffee grinds & teabags
  • Wilted flowers
  • Bread
  • Cooked and uncooked meats
  • Fish, prawn shells
  • Bones
  • Paper towels and tissues are ok in small amounts

What NOT to put in your Bokashi Bin

  • Liquids such as water, milk or fruit juice
  • Excess paper or cardboard
  • Plastic wrap
  • Cat and dog faeces
  • Anything starting to go off, or that is mouldy should definitely not go into your bokashi bin – this includes blue cheese.

Where to keep your Bokashi bin

Your bokashi bin should be kept somewhere where you will be able to easily access it daily. It is important to place it in a cool shady area. Under the kitchen sink is ideal.

It should not be put in an area of direct sunlight or heat as this will make the waste ‘go off’ and you’ll be left with a rancid smelling bokashi bin.


Once the fermentation period is over, you will see that the food looks just like food, except pickled. It should smell similar to pickles or cider vinegar. Occasionally and particularly after longer fermentation periods, a white cotton-like fungi growth may appear on the surface. This is normal and part of a good fermentation process.

It is very important to clean the bokashi bucket out between batches as what is left inside after removing the com-posted material will make the next batch ferment too quickly. Use only water and vinegar not detergents.

Useful By-Products

The liquid gathered in the base of the bokashi bucket is called ‘grass essence’ and can be used as a:

  • Liquid fertiliser (dilute with water 1:10)
  • Compost booster
  • Descaling and antibacterial liquid for cleaning drains and sinks

Burying the finished contents increases soil nutrients and fertility.

Trouble Shooting

Smelly—Add more activator, make sure lid is secured tightly, liquid is drained daily and the bucket is in a cool shady place
Insects—Check that the lid is on tightly, the tap is closed and the seal around tap is tight.
Ferments too quickly— you have not washed the bucket properly between mixes.

Last Updated on December 31, 2021 by admin

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Fermented Pickles