I'm starting to make my own Kombucha and have seen scoby with many different colors, shapes, textures, etc.

My goal is to have a scoby that produces good probiotics and a taste that is acceptable to the average bud.

There are many elements that could alter the quality of the scolby, for example: Direct Sunlight, Altitude, Humidity, Temperature, Type of Tea(or other liquids), Sugar, etc.

I want to understand the role of each element that contributes to the qualities that make up high quality kombucha.

If you know any links, research documentation, or anything that reinforces your suggestions please post them.

  • Is scolby meant to be SCOBY, symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast?
    – SAJ14SAJ
    Jul 21, 2013 at 3:50
  • 2
  • FYI, your goal here is not really useful in terms of getting specific answers. "Good probiotics" is approximately meaningless, and "acceptable" taste doesn't really narrow things down much.
    – Cascabel
    Sep 13, 2013 at 19:06
  • this might get more responses at homebrewing.stackexchange
    – baka
    Sep 14, 2013 at 16:28

1 Answer 1


If you want your Kombucha be strong, consistent, and to taste like a commercial one, then you need to use the same SCOBY contained in a commercial kombucha. Remember, making Kombucha, just like brewing wine, mead, or beer, is nothing more than glorified yeast herding. You give the SCOBY what it wants to eat, and it does the rest. It's really that simple. You just need the same starter as a commercial company.

Now, many companies spend years perfecting their strains of yeast/bacteria, and trying to raise your own or getting a starter from "some guy" often just won't compare because it is either weak, or it hasn't been fed properly, it contains too much acetalbacter, etc.

So, how do you do it? You use the SCOBY that commercial kombucha makers provide you in the bottle and propagate it. In homebrewing we use a similar procedure called "washing yeast," where you take a commercial beer, drink the majority, and then use the dregs of yeast at the bottom to ferment your own beer.

Start with an unpasteurized, raw commercial bottle of Kombucha that you like that has not been sorbated or sulfited. Check the bottle for wisps of sediment in the bottle, indicating that it contains some mother, the more the better.

Then, you prepare food (black tea and sugar), and mix the two. Cover with some cloth, store in a warm (I would guess at 65-70 degrees F based on my experience brewing wine/beer and alsoo purposely making vinegar) and dark place, and let the mother start to grow. It'll take 2-3 feedings before you have a strong mother, but it should form. If it doesn't? Grab another bottle of kombucha and try again.

This link explains the process in better detail.


Once you have the mother, just continue feeding and do whatever you can not to break the cycle of feedings so it doesn't get stressed. You are dealing with living things, and so they will have a tendency to fall into cycles. If you break the cycles, they'll get stressed.

  • 1
    this information is now out of date. Laws have changed and it is not recommended to grow your own kombucha mother from the bottled kombucha you buy from the store. I suggest buying one from a certified accredited retailer with good reviews.
    – user34101
    Mar 9, 2015 at 12:13
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    @user34101 When you say "Laws have changed" which country are you talking about and which laws specifically? stackexchange.com is used internationally so it's useful to be explicit when talking about legal issues.
    – AnnanFay
    Aug 17, 2018 at 2:22

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