About this good practice
Bokashi is an organic fertilizer that is created after fermentation under anaerobic conditions (without oxygen) and can be used to restore soil fertility. This allows the organic matter content and the humus content to increase. The carrying capacity of the soil and the water storage capacity are enhanced by means of higher organic matter contents.
Making Bokashi is an effective way to convert organic materials into a rich soil conditioner. In addition, Bokashi also offers potential financial benefits for municipalities and water boards. Municipalities and water boards often have to incur high costs for the disposal and processing of the biomass flows that are released from roadside, ditch and pruning management. Land management organizations often have to incur additional costs to be able to sell natural streams. These residual flows can be valuable raw materials for Bokashi. It is interesting to also process these local green flows locally (on farm) and thus close local cycles.
In the Noordelijke Friese Wouden area, various parties: municipality, water board, SMEs, Noardlike Fryske Wâlden (representing 800 farmers in the area) and knowledge institutions, did research to the effect of Bokashi on soils and crops and are setting up local ‘Green stations’ on farm. These ‘Green stations’ function as a small biomass hub for processing and reusing local biomass flows for soil.
- sufficient biomass flows in the region from different sources.
- partners that: own biomass flows, have knowledge of Bokashi making process and legislation, landowners to apply Bokashi.
- cost per metric ton: €10,- for inputs: minerals, bacteria. €10,- for labour and machinery.
Evidence of success
The results of the experiments (first 4 years) show an an increase in yield for grassland compared to conventional manure. Compared to maize the yields where somewhat lower than conventional manure.
The results for soil quality do not show very large differences after three years. The soil treated with Bokashi does have a higher amount of soil biology.
The five farmers that tested Bokashi will keep using Bokashi. One of the farmers is setting up a 'Green station' to produce Bokashi locally.
Potential for learning or transfer
The practice is potentially interesting for parties that:
- want to learn more on the Bokashi making process
- monitor and compare effects/ results of Bokashi
- want to set up a Bokashi chain or 'green station': guidelines, succes factors, law and economics.
In the Netherlands approximately 40 Bokashi projects/ initiatives have started. They are monitored by and share their results with the Dutch organization Circulair Terreinbeheer. www.circulairterreinbeheer.nl