How Long Can A Scoby Live In The Fridge
A Scoby can live in the fridge for up to 2 – 3 months. After that, it will start to break down and will not be as effective in fermenting kombucha. If you need to store your Scoby for more than a few months, it’s best to keep it in the freezer.
There are signs that you can look for to tell you the scab is unhealthy, and that another batch needs to be started. You will want to make sure that your SCOBY is stored correctly until you get the opportunity to start the next batch.
If you are going to keep your SCOBY in the can for long periods of time, be sure to keep it in a bit of sugary tea or previously-brewed kombucha at all times. If you are between batches, simply keep the SCOBY in the jar with the cloth covering, almost exactly like you would with primary fermentation. It will remain well-fed, alive, and ready to restart fermentation whenever you are, provided that you change out the sugary tea in it every 4-6 weeks. As long as you are replacing a lot of your vinegary kombucha every 6 weeks with fresh sweet tea, your SCOBY will keep staying healthy and well fed as long as you wish to keep your scoby.
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After 6 weeks, your now sugar-free, vinegary kombucha will need to be replaced with a fresh batch of sweet tea in order for your SCOBY to remain well fed. If you are just pausing your brewing for 6 weeks or less, you can simply begin your kombucha as usual, combining your SCOBY with the sweet tea and the starter tea, covering the can, then leaving it. When you decide to actually start brewing with your cooled SCOBY again, let it sit at room temperature at least for a couple days so that it gets used to warmer temperatures and gets its rhythm back, then either make another batch with it, or add it to sweet tea.
Also, if you store your scobys in the refrigerator — any time you actually do decide to use them, it usually takes several batches of brewing for the SCOBY/starter tea to wake back up and get it to be warmed up again and to get it warmed up again. Even if your SCOBYs remain mold-free and smell-free in the freezer, it may take several brewing cycles, or weeks, for the scobys to wake up and get reacclimatized to a warmer temperature. Depending on how long the cooled SCOBY has been in the refrigerator, and how resistant your SCOBY is, it may take as much as a couple of weeks for it to come back up to full strength.
|Type of Scoby|
|Normal Scoby||1 – 6 months.|
|Dried-out Scoby||3 months|
|Non-brewed Scoby||2 – 3 month|
Because a healthy SCOBY may have a variety of characteristics, there might be times during the fermentation process when you are concerned about whether or not it is doing well. If it seems like your scoby has stopped growing, there is a chance that something is not right with your beer.
If you actually discover that there is any mold growing at the top of the top of the beer that you are fermenting, then you need to pitch it and start again with a fresh scoby. If you have been making kombucha, you have noticed each batch produces a new SCOBY, which is the gelatinous layer that sits on top of your brewed brew. During the fermentation process, mini-scobys may begin to form at the top of the brewed your brew, giving it a definite moldy look. With every batch of kombucha, one tiny scoby is produced, and the process starts all over again, before you know it, you will have a freezer full of scobys.
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Remove your scobys and a cup of the kombucha and put them to one side (you will be using it for the next batch). With both of the SCOBYs removed from the fermentation vessel, it is time to remove the remaining Kombucha from the vessel. Once your scobys are dehydrated, put your scobys into a sealed plastic bag and store in your fridge (not the freezer).
A dehydrated SCOBY can last for up to 3 months in the fridge, then rehydrate it so that it can be used again for making kombucha. Once you are ready to start making kombucha again, check out our instructions for rehydrating your SCOBY. Having more than one SCOBY increases the odds that you will have success in rehydrating at least one when you are ready to start making kombucha again. Do not forget to add at least 1 cup of starter liquid to your SCOBYs when starting a new batch.
If fresh sugared tea is not an option, however, adding only sugars will usually allow the kombucha scoby to survive until you are ready to revisit. A kombucha scoby can be placed into a can with some fresh sugar tea and some starter tea (the same ratio that you use for making a regular batch) and allowed to sit in a relatively cool area. Make a storage jar for the scoby and put in a fridge. While this is not a perfect solution, since there is an increased risk of mould growth once scobys are kept in the refrigerator, a kombucha scoby can be placed in a fresh batch of sugar tea and starter tea in the refrigerator.
The quantity of kombucha being stored does not need to be exact necessarily, but keep in mind the scoby needs enough fodder to stay healthy. Scoby is not recommended to keep in the refrigerator for a long period because of the risk of fungus growing in the kombucha once it is removed from the refrigerator.
If you can, try and keep SCOBY HOTEL at a somewhat cooler temperature to help the kombucha culture to slow down. If I have still not convinced you, or you live in an extremely warm climate where keeping it room temperature results in an overly bitter or astringent-tasting kombucha, it is okay if you want to keep your container in a fridge.
If you are wondering what a SCOBY Hotel is, it is basically just a storage vessel for holding all your excess scobys you are not actively using for making a batch of kombucha. It may help to set up a SCOBY hotel, so that should one SCOBY die, you can easily swap out for another young SCOBY and keep on keeping on with your never-ending kombucha supply.
You can use the extra-strong kombucha that you strain out of the SCOBY hotel every 4 weeks as good starting tea for your own brewing, or as kombucha vinegar for salad dressings, vegetable glazes, cleaning liquids, skin care, etc. Keep your SCOBYs liquid…You can feed the SCOBYs a cup of kombucha or sweet tea every 4 to 6 weeks or so. If you have to go away for 3 months without making any booch, and want to keep the SCOBYs, simply use the techniques I talked about before, and you should only need to re-stock your canner once with fresh sweet tea.
How do you store a SCOBY when not brewing?
Your Scoby should be kept in a clean plastic bag or a tiny glass container. You can store your Scoby in the refrigerator in a clean, airtight container if you want to take a break between batches of beer. Put your Scoby in a glass jar or a new plastic bag for the time being.
How do you activate a SCOBY from a fridge?
When you wish to manufacture a fresh batch with a chilled SCOBY, leave it at normal room temperature for at least a few days to acclimatize to the higher temperature and wake up before brewing a new batch or adding it to sweet tea.
Can I revive a dried-out SCOBY?
To resolve it, simply put it into a coffee filter. Making a batch of sweet tea is all that’s left to do now that the SCOBY and starting liquid are prepared for use. Nothing special should be used because it will just obstruct the process. Use normal table sugar and inexpensive black tea bags to make your tea.