In this study, three different sets of experiments were conducted with the aim of evaluating the effects of initial moisture content and bulking agent on bio-drying efficiency of food waste as well as weight reduction. Results showed that initial moisture content has a significant impact on bio-drying, affecting temperature and water removal rate as well as volatile solid degradation, with higher maximum temperature obtained in Trial 3 (initial moisture content of 44.95 %) and lowest maximum temperature obtained in Trial 1 (initial moisture content of 69.29 %). The bio-drying index indicated that Trial 2 had higher water removal efficiency (72.96 %) with less organics consumption (bio-drying index = 10.1). On the whole, Trial 1, 2 and 3 saw a weight reduction of 54.63 %, 42.56 % and 35.33 % alongside a moisture reduction of 53.26 %, 47.46 % and 64.51 % respectively. This finding suggests that the use of bulking agent has significant effect on the initial moisture content with subsequent impact on bio-drying efficiency which could provide some promising approach to pre-treat organic waste to reduce the moisture content, weight and volume and increase the energy value for solid recovered fuel generation (SRF). (C) 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.