In this article I'm going to show you how to make DIY bokashi bran at home, and hopefully save a little bit of cash in the process.
I've bought most of my bran on Amazon in the past, and it's very reasonably priced. But there is always a strange part of me that wants to have a crack at making my own. I guess it's that self-reliant and frugal part of me. Perhaps you are the same?
Making bokashi bran at home isn't hard, it just required a few items, which I'll list in the article. But if you're totally new to this method of composting, take a moment to read the next section.
If you're a Bokashi aficionado, click here to skip to the meaty part of making your own bran.
Table Of Contents
What Is Bokashi Bran?
At the very heart of the Bokashi composting method is the Bokashi bran. The bran is nothing special, usually no more than a wheat bran, molasses, water and most importantly an inoculant, microbes that are laced throughout the bran mix to break down the compost scraps from your kitchen.
The reason bran is typically used to carry the Bokashi microbes is that it is easy to dust your scraps with this mix, ensuring the microbes are spread over all of the compostable waste.
Some people refer to them as Bokashi flakes, as any plant-based carbonaceous material will work. That said, wheat bran is easy to obtain and is the most commonly used inoculant delivery device.
What's In Bokashi Bran?
Bokashi bran recipes vary, but in general, they are a variation on this theme. The ingredients list is limited, which is great for us home 'brewers'
- Wheat Bran
- Microbial Innoculant
- Sea Salt
- Ceramic Powder (optional)
- Storage Container
- Plastic Garbage Sack
Why Make Your Own?
There are always good reasons to make your own bran at home. Cost is often a factor, if you can pick up wheat bran in bulk from a local animal feed depot, you can make huge savings.
Additionally, producing your own allows you to tweak things as you learn, makes small changes and record the benefits of disadvantages.
For me, I just like to do stuff myself. It's not strictly necessary, it often comes down to personality.
Even store bought Bokashi bran is actually pretty cheap, this year long supply from Amazon is pretty cost effective in my view.
A Bokashi Bran Recipe: The Ingredients
Here's what you are going to need for your home made Bokashi bran. I purchase all my ingredients on Amazon, they are cost effective and quickly delivered. I trust Amazon so feel free to check the current prices.
You can of course, reduce the quantities and do 1/2 the amount.
10 lbs Wheat Bran (These 4lb bags are good, you'll need 3)
Ceramic powder (optional) available from the TeraGanix website
30 ml Blackstrap Molasses (This jar will last ages, you can cook with it too)
30 ml EM-1 Microbial Inoculant (This bottle will last for ages)
3 liters hot water - 120 degrees F is perfect.
How To Make Bokashi Bran At Home
Follow this video for a step by step guide to making your own Bokashi bran. He makes up his own inoculant, but by purchasing the EM-1 Bokashi solution, you can do away with this step.
I'll be discussing how to make em1 Bokashi inoculant in a future article.
Making your own DIY Bokashi bran at home is so simple, requiring no expertise and very limited ingredients. If you plan to make a lot, buying bran in bulk is a great idea, it's definitely worth seeking out animal feed stores and bulk cooking supply stores to save money.
The other ingredients will last for many batches.
I'd certainly recommend having a crack at making your own bran. If you are just getting started, then picking up a complete kit like I discuss in THIS POST, which has everything included.
Good luck, and Happy Bokashi Making!