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Why We Never Use Dehydrated SCOBY

Why We Never Use Dehydrated SCOBY

We receive quite a few emails regarding SCOBY health, and as a result an immense number of images and stories about home brews all over the world. The most common message we receive is on the topic of mold speculation and brew failure. After digging a little deeper, it's frequently revealed that the brewer has started their brew with a dehydrated SCOBY. We did some of our own investigating using a very commonly procured dehydrated SCOBY and wrote about our results here.  



Our customers have made some adjustments after realizing the difficulty of brewing with a dehydrated culture, much like our customer Jonny:  

Just wanted to say thank you. Wow the batch of buch that you gave me is exponentially better than the dehydrated scoby I got from the other company! Its even a little fizzy just like the stuff off the shelves and looks like its coming along fantastically . Thanks a million. -Jonny
After starting a brew with a freshly-grown SCOBY, things will move along swimmingly.  

Photos of brews from a dehydrated SCOBY

 Content below may not be suitable for some viewers. Viewer discretion is advised.  

Very weak SCOBY growth after weeks

Moldy brew from a dehydrated SCOBY

 Look closely to see your future if you brew with a dehydrated SCOBY

These cultures are definitely over-(dehyd)rated!

A beautiful but dangerous art piece

So, start your kombucha brews with fresh SCOBY every time and save yourself the ignominy of a moldy brew and the pain of losing what once was a mother with a bright, wet future!

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  • Eric
Comments 11
  • Daniel

    I also started with a Dehydrated SCOBY and after 3-4 batches it still looks like the one above (Inactive after weeks). Should it take this long?

  • Eric Childs
    Eric Childs

    Hi jackie, sorry to hear it. Shoot us an email and we will send you a coupon code that you can use for one of our fresh SCOBY. You will love the kombucha you brew from them.

  • Jackie

    I started with a D hydrated Scooby. Hydrated it but now I have had two batches from two separate babies of the original that are moldy. I had to throw out everything and now I don’t have any Scooby. Where would you recommend that I can’t I skoopy?. Thank you very much. Jackie

  • Cora

    Hi there. I made my last brew using a scoby I had kept in the fridge for a few weeks (as i wasnt going ro be able to brew for some time). The scobies were not dry but there wasnt much excess liquid/kombucha left…it had been absorbed i presume….but i put it in the tea brew regardless. I know i didnt have the amount of premade kombucha usually called for. It has taken a while to ferment, and my top scoby had brown gummy residue. It isnt mold, but do you think this is still ok?!

  • Rhonda Holmes
    Rhonda Holmes

    Hello, would love a coupon code to purchase a SCOBY from you

  • Cheryl Brush-Elsinger
    Cheryl Brush-Elsinger

    I just started brewing with a dehydrated scoby. I had no idea! I now have a little thing with a dark center, which is separate from the original scoby. Could it be mold? How will i know? Should i pitch it all because i don’t know? It did not seem fuzzy, or green, or black or blue. Seemed to have a brown thread hanging from it.

  • Daniel

    I also tried the Dehydrated SCOBY and after 4 batches it never grew and now my current batch is moldy.

  • Eric Childs
    Eric Childs

    Daniel, it should not take that long. A fresh SCOBY should get you kombucha in 10-14 days.

  • Eric Childs
    Eric Childs

    Cheryl, many brews we have seen with dehydrated SCOBY dont mold but dont produce anything but yeast and acetic acid. Essentially yeast vinegar. You might be in that camp. Please let us know if you need help getting set up with a freshy!

  • Eric Childs
    Eric Childs

    Rhonda, shoot us a direct email and we will hit you back with a code! Or you can just call in the order. We would love to get you brewing.

  • Eric Childs
    Eric Childs

    Cora,It is important to use kombucha as well as SCOBY to lower the PH of your brew. You can send us a picture to our general email and we will take a look at it for you.

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