Changing size of Kombucha Fermenter - Old Mother Disappeared

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Enthusiastic Homebrewer
Feb 19, 2018
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Hi Everyone,

I recently made my own mother in a 2L jar and decided that i wanted to brew more so i upgraded to a 1 gallon jar. When i did this and dropped the mother i had into it, it floated for the first day then just disappeared. Now i currently have what looks like a new mother forming in this tea.

Wanted to make sure it was forming correctly, as i'm not the most well versed in Kombucha brewing (Yet). My recipe had a pureed mango added into the boiling water to sanatize, then I added this boiling water to the jar to cool.

Please let me know if this new scoby that appears to be growing is healthy looking and please help me understand if the size of the jar may have made the old one disappear (i'm wondering if it may have sunk into the mango remnants haze at the bottom).


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I'm no kombucha pro (I've only made 5-6 batches) but my understanding is that scoby itself isn't as important as the liquid that the scoby swims in... i.e. you can start a resh batch with just the liquid full of cooties...

It's why you can use a commercial bottle (like GT's) to get started, even though there;s no scoby...
That little pancake is a by-product not a necessity...

Your old one might have sunken into the haze, but a new one will grow to fill the size of the jar you're using....

BTW... look into making SCOBY jerky .... it's surprisingly tasty...
Thanks I appreciate it!

Just so i know, this is the first time I've fermented with fruit, should I worry about the brown on the scoby?

What the old SCOBY does (float, sink, turn sideways) is not important as long as a new SCOBY begins to form across the top. This lets you know the fermentation is working.

It is best not to include fruit in your first fermentation or have it interact with your SCOBY. Search for tips on secondary fermentation (aka F2).
So should I do a secondary fermentation? Rack everything out of the original except a cup of liquid and the scoby?

Should I start over and make a new scoby?
It depends on if and how you want to carbonate your finished kombucha. Most people do their first or primary fermentation with just sweat tea, starter tea and the old SCOBY. Then when it tastes good to them, they remove the SCOBY and enough starter tea for another batch. They then add fruit and other flavors into individual bottles and add the kombucha or add the fruit to the kombucha in the fermenter, stir it up and then pour it in bottles and seal the bottles. If left at room temperature for a few days, the sugar in the fruit will be consumed by the yeast and carbonate the bottles. They can then be refrigerated for drinking. Beware of "bottle bombs." They then start the process all over again.

I do large batches of kombucha and keg it. So I make a 5-6 gallon batch to start with. I then drain 2 1/2 gallons of kombucha into a second fermenter add fruit and flavors and let that sit for 5-7 days. I then strain the fruit flavored kombucha into a 2 1/2 or 3 gallon keg, put it in a refrigerator and connect it to a CO2 tank to carbonate. I then serve it on tap.

If you are really interested in the hobby, I would suggest buying the Big Book of Kombucha which explains everything in far more detail than I can.
Thanks for the suggestion! I'll check it.out.

I'm coming from the beer brewing world and have always liked the flavor of Kombucha. I can see the appeal doing a keg size portion.
Since I already had a 3 tap keezer that would hold six regular kegs and two 2 1/2 or 3 gallon kegs on the hump, I just added a kombucha tap and started making kombucha in larger batches once I got the hang of it. Keg Outlet has a good series of articles and videos on this. Check out: Brewing 5 Gallons Of Kombucha While my main fermenter holds 6 gallons, I only take about 2 1/2 3 gallons out of it at a time to add fruit and keg with. That way, the fermentation process is much faster since I am essentially using almost 3 gallons of starter tea each time. It's called "continuous brew." Good luck and enjoy the hobby.
SCOBY, in reality, is kombucha tea.
The pellicle is a cellulose shield that the culture creates to block out oxygen.
The important component is the starter tea, i.e. a mature kombucha that has low ph and is 20-25% of your next batch.
"20-25% of your next batch" Wow! That's quite a component, I've been booching now for about 8 months now and always use 10-15%. Should I be upping my starter amount?
Increasing your starter will help. The mature booch has low ph. It'll ensure other microorganisms don't settle in. It is also a large enough load of SCOBY and low ph to jumpstart your fermentation. I make 100 liter batches using a 5 gallon starter. I make my 5 gallon starter with 1 gallon of starter.