I was just wondering if anyone could tell me whether or not I should keep feeding my ginger bug or start over. It was bubbling nicely the first three days, but now it seems to have gone flat. It still has a pleasant smell and doesn't appear to have any mold on it, so I'm kinda tempted to drink it/make a de-carbonated soda, and start over again fresh. Do you think it will recover if I just keep feeding it/burping it? Also, can I just drink it straight or do you think that will make me sick? Anyway, thanks :)

  • 1
    This a general microbiology answer, I have no experience with gingerbugs. Generally, bacteria & yeast won't grow forever on just sugar. They'll need some minerals and amino acids (yeast nutrients and yeast extract are great place to starts, but might not be quite right for your bug.) Overcrowding is a theoretical possibility (could trigger sporulation), have you diluted the culture?
    – Pepi
    Commented Feb 11, 2015 at 1:16
  • you say you left your Broth for 2 months in the fridge... I left it for 3 weeks and now I can't get it to fise anymore... What dit you do after you got it out of the fridge ? It still smells, looks en Taste very well.... 😜 xx Commented Jul 13, 2020 at 17:20

3 Answers 3


The yeast/bacteria are unlikely to be dead, but may have gone dormant for a number of reasons.

If you added sugar too quickly, you may have decreased the water activity too much. This is one reason honey is so resistant to microbial growth - too much solute in the liquid.

If you weren't adding ginger when you fed the bug (or your ferment is really active), the yeast may have run out of essential nutrients (other than sugar).

If you aren't oxygenating the bug enough, you may have more anaerobic fermentation (which can be slower), or something may have outcompete the yeast. You'd be unlikely to smell an infection (at least of your bugs are anywhere near as potently ginger smelling as mine are).

In any case, I think your best bet would be to start a new bug, but add a little of the old one to get it kicked off (even if there's an infection, if you set it up right the yeast will win in a sugar-rich/oxygen-rich environment). And then use it sooner rather than later - you don't need a ton to get your large batch going.


I have put my ginger beer plant through hell and it always comes back. I left it in the fridge for 2 months once and it was fine. I spilled it all over the floor and rescued a few particles and restarted it. The only thing I can find to consistently kill it is store-bought lemon juice that has preservatives. I'm sure yours is totally fine. As @kevbonham says it may be time to swap out the liquid and start fresh, or move on to a larger batch.

If you are worried about nutrients I sometimes boil some yeast and throw it in to a batch to give it something fun to eat.

In general with brewing things if it smells ok it is probably ok to drink.


Mine was bubbling for the first 3 days and when I went to feed it the 4th day I also added a little more water, im wondering if I changed the chemistry too much myself

  • This doesn't answer the question. StackExchange is for Q&A more than general discussion. If you have any specific questions, ask a new one; don't comment on existing thread. That's how it works around here.
    – dmtaylor
    Commented Aug 22, 2020 at 20:56

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.