Bokashi in the Philippines

Photo: www.reap-canada.com

I’ve picked up a few bits of news recently from the Philippines about the inroads being made by Bokashi and EM. Partly I think they can be put down to someone somewhere being on the ball and getting the information out to the press, but that doesn’t always have to be such a bad thing. So many silly and downright poor things get a lot of airspace, its great to see that something genuinely good like Bokashi also gets some promotion.

Anyway, here the Manilla Bulletin Publishing Corporation is writing about how the Department of Agriculture in the Philippines is promoting organic farming throughout the Philippines — like everywhere else the challenge is to produce enough food — now — without jeopardising the environment. Apparently the project involves a huge investment in solutions for soil inoculation. Thus far, they say, the most effective they’ve found is produced locally using the Bokashi method developed by Dr. Teruo Higa that creates fertilizer out of organic materials, including kitchen waste.

I don’t know the details, but Bokashi in an agricultural setting in Asian countries is sort of the same, same, but different to what we do here in our homes. In Indonesia, I believe they take production leftovers (banana waste) and make huge piles on the ground which they then make into Bokashi compost, in other words ferment it using EM (Effective Microorganisms). Much as we do in our little kitchen bins but on a scale big enough to spread out onto the fields.

The effects have been reported as impressive in applications where they’ve got the balance right. The microbes are spread across the land where they set up camp and start breeding, gradually improving the microlife in the soil with all the benefits that brings. The carrier (be it food waste, banana stuff, leftovers from wine production (as used in NZ) helps feed the microbes while they do their work.

The US Department of Agriculture has recently done some research into whether this works or not and came up with a positive result — yes, EM improves productivity, provided it is added in conjunction with organic material.

It’s a fantastically positive sign — in times like this where land is being destroyed by chemical mismanagement or unable to produce the required yields through traditional organic farming, it’s a relief to see there are some strong forces propagating for change. Yes, we can do this better! Yes, we can get it right!

Read more here on REAP Canada’s website, REAP stands for Resource Efficient Agricultural Production. It’s an independent, non-profit organisation working to help the world produce more food more efficiently.

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12 thoughts on “Bokashi in the Philippines”

  1. We’ve been promoting vermiculture and IMO (Korean Tech similar to EM) in our network of 10,000+ families. I’m planning to switch to EM instead of IMO. Doing research now on EM and the different types of EM.

    I can testify that organic farming is the future. It’s cheap, better harvests and it’s sustainable!

  2. Is EM bokashi availbale in the phils?where can i buy?i want to start a bokashi composting for our kitchen wasts like we do in australia

    1. Good on you! Where do you live? We don’t actually sell any Bokashi here on this site, just talk about it :-). Probably your best bet is to google it and find a local supplier, otherwise you could ask on our facebook page (look for bokashiworld on Facebook) and see if anyone can help you. Good luck! /Jenny

    1. Please instruct me where I can find the materials in the Philippines to make my own Bokashi or buy the equipment as I can’t seem to get much info about this subject in the Philippines. I live in Iligan city so if you have any information relevant to Iligan that would be a bonus. Thank you Eric

      1. Hi Barry,

        Visit this site to learn how to Bokashi in Philippine setting -http://theunconventionalfarmer.com

        JennyH, awesome site!

        – Anne

    1. Not really, you need the real EM concentrate for it to work out. Obviously whatever mud you use is local (and free!) and that will vary a lot, but the whole idea depends on having the right EM microbes as an innoculant. /Jenny

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