Mold / Not Mold


Every beginner home-brewer of kombucha has been there: Checking up on your scoby, seeing some unusual-looking film, or spots or bubbles, and wondering: Is it MOLD?! 😨 Is it not mold? We'd love to reassure you that it's usually not mold. And to demonstrate, we've selected a few photos that were sent to us by actual home brewers, inquiring about the health of their scobies. So, ask yourself: Upon first glance, does this like mold or not?

Exhibit 1:

White-ish film? Check.
Strange-looking tiny bubbles? There they are.
Brownish color throughout?
Scroll to find out what all this stuff could mean...

not mold.png

It means only one thing: Your scoby is working hard! It's absolutely, positively not mold. Bubbling, a white-ish looking film, some discoloration are all completely normal when the scoby starts doing her thing during first ferment.


Exhibit 2:

What are these strange white warts on the scoby? Why are they scattered about the surface in this funny formation? Shouldn't the scoby be totally SMOOTH?

It can be, of course. So, what's happening here? Scroll down to find out...

What's happening here is a big ol' slice of normal! You're scoby is fine! That's not mold. That's just yeast and bacteria doing their happy dance. And sometimes, yes, it looks a little different than what you'd expect. Sometimes, the surface of the baby scoby may look a little rough, uneven. And that's OK! Because your scoby is not a contestant in a beauty pageant. She's just here to ferment your tea! And that's exactly what she's doing in the photo above.

Exhibit 3:

Uh-oh, this can't be good. What are those greenish dots all over? Are they just weird bubbles?

If your scoby looks like this, then you, dear brewer, have a case of the dreaded mold. Yes, it sucks. Yes, you will lose your scoby. But take it as a lesson learned: Never expose your vessel or scoby to contaminants; always handle your scoby with clean hands, or wear gloves; be sure to keep your vessel in an environment where the temperature stays between 70 and 80 degrees, and balance all of the ingredients carefully: 1 cup of starter per 1 gallon of sweet tea.

If have concerns about your scoby, shoot us a pic at info@kombuchahunter, and we'll help you figure out the situation!

Looking to start your home-brewing journey or need a new scoby or kit? Then please visit our shop! Our organic, healthy scobies are grown in a 100% vegan kitchen with love and care.

Stacy Gueraseva