how many people here recycle at home oh good number what kind of things do you recycle air box glass and cans okay we can have a soda cans we recycle paper paper you can recycle jugs of milk plastic money what about community so what happens to your food after lunch in the cafeteria if you don't finish it all what happens to great job doesn't garbage can yes go to the dump if you're like most Americans you generate close to four and a half pounds of garbage every day this adds up quickly
in the United States alone we produce 222 million tons of garbage every year as the population grows so does the amount of garbage the EPA estimates that by the year 2010 this country will have to deal with 265 million tons of trash annually so where does this garbage go some of it gets incinerated some gets recycled but 60% ends up buried underground and covered with dirt in disposal sites known as landfills for years landfills have been the most popular waste disposal method but time may be running out for the solution many landfills are filling up quickly and new space is hard to find in the US and especially in countries with a smaller landmass like Japan governments have tried to burn the waste but this solution is expensive and releases dioxin and other poisons into the air we have to find other solutions for waste disposal even a medium-sized City can produce tons of trash every day the largest component in a landfill is paper followed by yard waste glass and metals the next largest component is food waste at roughly 11 percent of all waste generated this food waste is an especially troublesome element of the landfill as it starts to decay it gives off odors dangerous gases and attracts rodents and other animals we can't eliminate all the waste we generate but we can all do our part to create less of it we throw away 14 million tons of food every year to put that into perspective if you were to take all that and keep it up onto a football field you have a pile 43 miles high that's about 6 times the height of Mount Everest the tallest mountain on earth because of the way that landfill technology works this material never has a chance to completely decompose it's dumped on the ground and immediately plowed over this deprives it of oxygen and the elements that would normally break it down in fact there are researchers who have studied landfills and they've reported finding a 20 year old head of lettuce perfectly intact in the middle of a city dump the real irony is that this garbage can actually become a valuable resource for gardeners and farm throughout the world when the waist is properly composted it breaks down into a valuable organic soil additive that provides nutrients for crops and flower gardens and that's why we're here today to tell you about a special form of recycling that uses microorganisms microorganisms are tiny units of life too small to be seen without a microscope they are everywhere in nature in the air soil ocean rivers animals and even in the human body when we hear the word Michel organism we usually think of the kind that are harmful like the virus that gave you the flu last summer or the bacteria that causing an infection or spoiled that food in the back of your fridge microorganisms are the reason mold builds up in a bathroom or a trashcan smells bad on a hot day these not so friendly guys of the microbial world are called pathogens however the vast majority of microorganisms don't cause this kind of damage and in fact are crucial for sustaining life on earth this very friendly group is known as beneficial microorganisms and are responsible for balancing the Earth's ecological system and carrying out chemical processes that make life possible in fact without bacteria in our bodies we wouldn't even be able to digest our food in 1982 dr. Dehner Mejia a professor of agriculture at the University of video cuse in Okinawa Japan made an amazing discovery while conducting research on the beneficial effects of microorganisms in agriculture dr. Higa discovered a specific group of naturally occurring beneficial microorganisms with amazing antioxidant and anti-putin properties what does that mean instead of having food waste rotting and stinking these microorganisms have the ability to revive the store and preserve instead of studying the effects of one of these microorganisms at a time dr. Higa discovered that a combination of different microorganisms was most effective for the next several years he kept experimenting with various mixtures and eventually developed a combination of microorganisms from five separate families that seem to work best the three most important groups of beneficial microorganisms in eeehm are lactic acid bacteria yeast and photosynthetic bacteria these products are all used in food production today and are on the government's list of products that are generally recognized as safe' lactic acid bacteria are used to produce cheese and yogurt it turns cucumbers into pickles or soybeans and to soy sauce it is also produced in our bodies it is lactobacillus that helps our food digests yeast is used in making bread and wine lactic acid bacteria are used to process foods like Swiss cheese it keeps food from smelling bad it is also used outside the food industry for example to control algae and odor in fish ponds this combination of effective microorganisms had an amazing effect on crops when it was tested in the fields not only did crop production skyrocket the plants were healthier and more resistant to disease and pests and the treatment eliminated the need for dangerous pesticides as well as the use of expensive chemical fertilizer although dr. he does research initially concentrated on agricultural uses he soon found other ways to use this GM it turned out to be effective at fighting different kinds of pollution and it changed the way food waste decomposed normally garbage combines with oxygen and putrefies or decays the doctor mixed the garbage with these effective microorganisms in an anaerobic condition which means that no oxygen could get to it and instead of a smelly rotten mess the garbage fermented fermenting is the same process that turns cucumbers into pickles or grapes into wine as he conducted further research he began to realize some wonderful potential benefits from this process when he buried the fermented waste it turned to rich nutritional compost in a fraction of the time that it normally takes since the garbage was already fermented it didn't rot it didn't smell bad and it provided an opportunity to transform a giant problem tons of food waste into something that could benefit the entire community with these goals in mind dr. Higa formed e/m technologies a nonprofit organization to help other people learn about the possibilities he was discovering today this technology is being practiced in over 80 countries worldwide millions of tons of garbage have been diverted from landfills and turned into rich healthy compost PM has the potential to reduce pollution and the amount of chemicals in our environment help solve waste problems and promote better food production there is even research going on into the medical possibilities of e/m technology before we explain how to get a program started in your school or home let's talk about how this process actually happens food waste is made up of organic compounds that means in general a complex molecule containing many different elements including carbon in its whole form these molecules are no good to the soil but as they decay they break down into elements like nitrogen phosphate potassium and minerals that are essential for growing plants now in a normal composting operation it can take months for materials to break down into elements you start with organic material as it starts to decompose it gives off energy in the form of heat sometimes as high as 150 degrees Fahrenheit it can also give off energy in the form of gases which in some cases can make the process smell and attract flies in rodents finally after six months to a year the material is broken down into its basic elements nitrogen potassium phosphate and so on from there the plant absorbs these materials through its root system and converts it into the enzymes and amino acids that it needs to live throughout this process the compost is giving up energy and that means it's losing nutrients the end product has less nutrient content than the material you started with the e/m technology method of composting streamlines this process it happens over a period of about four weeks start to finish so you see the benefits much more quickly in the first step the material is fermented which helps preserve it this fermenting process takes about two weeks it may help to think of a cucumber if you leave it sitting out on a shelf it will rot and start to snow in a couple of days but if you put in a jar of vinegar it turns into a pickle and will stay fresh for months once the material is fermented you dig it into the ground over the next two to four weeks the compost will break down but there are some big differences the entire process from here only takes two to four weeks no significant heat or gases are produced meaning very little energy is used up in a process since very little energy is used during the process the e/m compost has a much higher level of nutrients than the traditional method also the material doesn't break down quite as much as it does in regular composting what happens is that it breaks down into smaller molecules like amino acids and enzymes that the plant can use right away these compounds stay together because of the fermenting process that happened in step one in 1996 eeehm technologies formed the Bokashi Network a non-profit group dedicated to teaching the concept of sustainability in schools these programs give students a chance to establish a connection between the soil the ecosystem and their role in improving the quality of the environment yeah mobocracy network recycled ola it's a kind enough I am very happy to hear about the activities of the e/m Bokashi Network in Tucson Arizona as we live our daily lives we all pollute our environment as economies expand the environment suffers therefore it's vital for us to have an awareness of environmental issues each of us should do our part in helping to clean the environment eeehm can help clean up the pollutants that are the main causes of environmental pollution if we use eeehm even food waste becomes a valuable resource that can be recycled back into the soil producing healthy flowers and vegetables cleaner air and revitalized soil I believe that if people of all ages uzm it will play a vital role in cleaning our environment and improving the quality of life I am so grateful to hear that iam Bokashi network outreach program based in Tucson Arizona is rapidly expanding throughout America I believe the en Bokashi network grassroots movement will play a leading role in proving the quality of our environment I really hope you enjoy participating in the en Bokashi Network think about how much food is thrown away in your school everyday there's all the food that isn't eaten from the trays plus all the leftovers the kitchen doesn't serve up try to imagine if they piled it up in the corner of your classroom every day it wouldn't be long before you were looking for new classroom space we're going to show you how to start a food waste recycling program in your own school and at home we'll start with a home program which will show you the basics of e/m composting and then talk about how to get a program running in your school composting with e/m is a simple and down-to-earth process first you mix the kitchen waste with the compost starter second you give the waste some time to ferment and finally you transfer the waste into the garden or planter we'll go over each step in detail to get you started on the right path you'll need two or more e/m composters or you can build your own using any 3 to 5 gallon plastic bucket if you build your own make sure it has the following features first an airtight lid if too much air gets into it it could spoil the process the buckets will need a strainer or divider to separate the food waste from the liquid that will accumulate during this process at the bottom of the bucket and it will need a spigot or valve to drain this liquid you'll also need some yam Bokashi compost starter you can make your own or purchase it from AM technologies later on we'll make Bokashi together and of course let's not forget your food waste just to toss your leftovers and food waste into the bucket after each meal if you have anything big like melon rinds or carrots you can chop it up into small pieces nothing bigger than the size of a golf ball this will speed up the process what kind of food can you put into the bucket well just about anything you eat fruit vegetables cooked or uncooked meat and fish prepared foods and dairy products like cheese never add any spoiled or moldy food items or any liquids such as milk or juice into the compost because it can spoil the batch don't add plastic glass styrofoam aluminum foil plastic wrap soda cans or paper products when you're ready to start composting spread a handful of e/m Bokashi over the bottom of the pail next add your food waste and coated thoroughly with a layer of Bokashi a good rule of thumb to follow is to add one handful of the compost starter for each inch of material in your bucket use more Bokashi during the summer or when treating high-protein foods such as meat fish and dairy products mix in the Bokashi every time you add garbage you don't have to stir all the way to the bottom of the bucket just mix it with the garbage you've just added you should end up with layers of each day's mixture in your bucket if you're just tossing in a little ways to sprinkle a little of the Bokashi over the top and give it a quick stir close the lid tightly every time you add waste to the bucket remember that eeehm needs an airtight environment to do its job it's probably easiest to store the bucket right in the kitchen if it's tucked away somewhere it may be too hard to get to on a regular basis just make sure it's not in a direct sunlight keep adding new layers of garbage and the compost starter every day until the bucket is mostly full during the fermentation process liquid may collect at the bottom of the bucket the amount collected will depend on the type of food waste you add to the bucket fruits and vegetables tend to release more moisture than other foods it's important to drain this liquid frequently at least every other day you'll want to save this valuable liquid which we call garbage juice it can be used to fertilize your houseplants and garden and to control odors and drain systems as a fertilizer diluted to a ratio of 1 to 1,000 this is equal to 1 teaspoon of garbage juice to 1 gallon of water poured onto the ground surrounding a plant not on the leaves themselves you can also pour the undiluted solution down your sinks drains or toilets to prevent the slime buildup and odors just be sure to use the e/m garbage juice the same day you drain it otherwise it could spoil when the first bucket is full store it away from the light for about 2 weeks get out your second bucket and start composting your fresh garbage in it remember you'll want to keep draining the garbage juice every two to three days after about two weeks the first bucket should be done the best way to tell if everything has worked out is by the smell as you remove the lid you sit down us a sweet and sour slightly acidic smell like pickles there may be some white mold or yeast growing on it this is a good sign if you notice a bad smell when you take off the lid something has gone wrong the mixture has putrified some of the things that can cause this failure are not closing the lid tightly after every use or not having an airtight container failure to drain the garbage juice often enough not adding enough kakashi using poor quality caution adding spoiled foods to the compost or too much exposure to Sun or extreme temperatures but for now let's assume that everything went well and you have a good batch of fermented garbage the final step is to transfer it to the garden or planter there are several different ways to do this in a new garden where nothing is planted dig a hole six to eight inches deep for the contents of the bucket into the hole and mix it with the soil cover this with a three-inch layer of just soil you can also use a planter or container make sure you get one with drainage holes in the bottom start with a layer of gravel this will help the drainage add one-third potting soil one-third fermented food waste and cover with one-third potting soil now with both of these methods you will have to let the ways to continue fermenting for at least two weeks before planting anything trenching is a good way to deal with a large amount of waste schools restaurants and businesses can use this method dig a trench two to three feet deep and one to two feet wide pour your waste into the trench and cover it with a layer of soil about six inches keep adding layers until the trench is full wait a month to either plant directly on top of the trench or you can dig out this super soil and use it in your planters or in your garden you can also use the compost to fertilize existing Gardens you want to dig in between the beds six to eight inches deep keeping your whole about a foot away from the nearest plant add the fermented garbage mix it with the dirt and cover it all with three inches of soil make sure the roots of the plant don't touch the compost directly for trees dig holes about one foot deep around the drip line this is under the end of the longest branches bury the fermented food waste in the holes and cover with three inches of soil again make sure the roots do not come in direct contact with the compost now what if something went wrong with the fermenting process and you end up with a gross disgusting smelling bucket of garbage don't throw it away you can still use it dig a hole one foot deep and away from trees and plants or use a ten gallon planter spread a half pound of Bokashi in the bottom of the hole if you're using a container start with a layer of soil then add the Bokashi put in the contents of the spoiled bucket and add another half pound of Bokashi finally cover it with a layer of soil in the summer this will take about two weeks to break down and about a month in the winter in a new garden wait about two weeks and plant your flowers or vegetables take care of them like you normally would make sure they get enough water and sunlight normally they won't need any extra fertilizer with the e/m compost in the soil the e/m compost helps develop a nutrient-rich soil that helps everything grow better flowers will grow bigger and last longer when used to grow food eeehm can increase crop yields produce food that is more nutritious and tastes better and food that even lasts longer once it's harvested and all of this from a program designed to get rid of garbage that's really one of the best things about e/m technology solving one problem leads to solutions for other problems let's look at a school where this program has been going on for a while miles exploratory school in Tucson Arizona started an e/m recycling program in 1996 and they've already diverted over 7 tons of food waste the school has won numerous awards for both their food recycling efforts and the beautiful gardens they have planted using the EEM post so how do you get a program started in your school first of all get a lot of people involved classmates teachers and maybe even parents this will mean less work for each person and it's always more fun to do things as a group get as many adults and family members involved as possible that they will help support the program get the neighboring businesses involved so you can recycle their containers next you want to set up a coordinator someone who's in charge of the whole project this can be a teacher cafeteria worker student parent or outside volunteer in large schools you might even consider creating an outside paid position the students totally took over this in fact so much so that I don't even know where some of the things are but the Bokashi is always there ready to use they put up the list in the classroom they sign up themselves they know when to leave the classroom come over set it after I actually have moved in the position of really having very little to do with running it once their time at the beginning of the year you'll need to look at some logistics that means figuring out how things will work you'll need to find a place to collect the waste and store it as it's fermenting figure out what you're going to do with the compost will you start a school garden or is there one already is there a neighborhood garden or farmer nearby who can use it for some schools it's easier to start on a small scale recycling once a week or just in one or two classes to start start very small something that's manageable if you start too big you're going to be overwhelmed so start with something that you're comfortable with and that you can that that doesn't overwhelm you like we started just collecting with one meal and now we're collecting one meal but three stations we've picked up a restaurant that we're collecting at now so you have to start small you'll have to figure out how many buckets you'll need and make sure you have enough and Bokashi compost starter on hand before you begin keep in mind that it will take two weeks for each bucket to complete the process this means that if you collect three buckets every day of the week you'll need storage space for 30 buckets the mixture should be kept in a dark place or at least out of direct sunlight it will be easier to drain the buckets if they are placed on cinder blocks or wood palates off the ground you'll also need to set up a schedule to detail who will do what work from collecting the food waste checking to make sure the garbage juice is drained on a regular basis and who will be working in the garden again this is easier when you have a lot of people involved after you know what you're going to do but before you start composting you'll want to send home information and have a meeting with anyone who is concerned parents can get worried when they hear the word microorganisms they tend to think about things like the flu virus or the e.coli bacteria that can infect food you're not dealing with anything like these in the e/m process all the microorganisms are on the Food and Drug Administration's list of items that are generally recognized as safe you want to assure them that this is a safe process and answer any questions they have before you get started from here the steps are pretty much the same as in a home composting setup just on a much larger scale you will need to have a place to collect the food waste normally this is easiest where students return their cafeteria trays you may already have separate containers for cans and recyclables what you need to do is add another container for students to scrape their food waste into the best way to do this is to scrape the food directly into the fermenting buckets and add the Bokashi as you go you can add the same types of food you used in the home demonstration just add a handful of Bokashi each time you get another inch or so of food waste in the bucket it's better to use too much Bokashi than too little if you have any doubts use a little more when the bucket is full add one last layer of Bokashi seal the lid and move on to the next one after the breakfast or lunch period you can add the leftovers from the kitchen side of the cafeteria as you fill one bucket and move on to the next be sure to put a date on the full one so you can keep track of it it should be ready in about two weeks store the filled buckets in a place that is protected from the direct Sun or extremes in temperature keep checking the liquid and drain it every two to three days after about two weeks the firm things should be done remember to check the smell as you lift the lid it should have a sweet sour smell take the compost out to wherever you've decided to use it and dig it into the soil using one of the methods we talked about earlier for schools with a new garden trenching works pretty well you can also use it to fertilize an existing garden when you dig this compost into the soil you're introducing millions of these beneficial microorganisms into the soil there are already millions of microorganisms and any handful of soil including some of the ones that come from the compost our research shows that what you are doing is tipping the balance in favor of these effective microorganisms they sort of crowd out the more harmful ones through a process called competitive exclusion well we've covered a lot of ground here and giving you the steps that have worked for most schools in our program remember what you need to do is find the system that works best for your school especially in terms of volume of food collected one area we still need to talk about is how to make Bokashi as we mentioned earlier you can purchase it directly from eeehm technologies many schools have found it more economical to make their own we'll take a look at how the Arizona School for the Deaf and Blind has set up their recycling program ASDB is the first school in the nation to implement an e/m vocational program with students making Bokashi for use by people who live in the community the first year all we did was collect the next year we learned how to make focaccia the next year we are now making composting and soils then we're gardening so you have to make sure that you start small and then build upon one step upon another steps so that so that it's it's done comfortably to make four pounds of Bokashi you will need four pounds of wheat bran or rice bran one quart of non-chlorinated water two teaspoons of molasses and 2 teaspoons of e/m mixture you can get wheat bran at a feed store in most communities the tap water has chlorine added to kill any harmful microorganisms unfortunately they also kill the beneficial microorganisms so you'll have to get some distilled or other non-chlorinated water any kind of store-bought molasses is fine and of course the e/m mixture will come from
The original full-length version of the EM® Bokashi video produced in 1997 through a grant from the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality.
The video is an educational presentation made with mainly for school teachers to set up a school fermented food waste recycling program. This video contains information about EM•1® Microbial Inoculant, how to make EM® Bokashi, and how to completely ferment all food wastes from a school cafeteria. (This type of program can be done anywhere: home, work, schools, etc. on a small or large scale and allows for nearly odor-free recycling of all food wastes including meat and dairy products.)
We have a recipe for making bokashi on our website: http://www.teraganix.com/EM-Bokashi-Recipe-s/262.htm