I’m in my first week of bokashi and at first the bin smelled pickled – strong, but not off putting. I added a bunch of shrimp shells one day, and more a day or two after. Opening now, the smell isn’t overpoweringly bad, you actually have to lean down to really smell it, but it no longer smells pickled. Kind of a mix between “bad” and “not bad.” Is there hope for my bokashi bin? I drained tea after the first few days since I had some high liquid content salsa (that I did my best to strain). I have been adding copious amounts of bokashi as well. Any advice is welcome!
Thanks for your question. Don’t despair, there is definitely hope for your bokashi bucket. The microbes love a mix of food to ferment, particularly the fruits and veggies. The harder to compost items (such as shrimp shells) can be tougher for the microbes. Try mixing in plenty of fruit peelings into the layer of shrimp shells, plus an extra sprinkling of bokashi bran at the same time. Alternatively, you can sprinkle in a bit of brown sugar or molasses in the shrimp shell layer. Something sweet and sugary will give the microbes a boost 😉
We would also recommend leaving your bucket an extra few days (longer if possible) to ferment. This will help make sure that the contents are fully fermented before you add them to your soil.
Happy composting 🙂