Mushroom Farming | Profitable Business Opportunity: Article: Page 120





Mushroom Farming | Profitable Business Opportunity:

A person who has a little bit of idea in the science & technology of mushroom growing and has an own building for having the farm – mushroom business will be the perfect option for him.

Mushroom Farming Expertise: It is always better to have a technical training on mushroom farming to gain expertise. You can contact ICAR- Directorate of Mushroom research for specific training for mushroom farming at their website www.nrcmushroom.org

Business Plan: Work out a detailed budget; write out a clear strategy and objectives of your business. Variety you want to grow and your target market like domestic or export.

Choose Variety: A good variety to start mushroom farming with is the Oyster mushroom. Different types of mushroom have different production cost and it is important to decide on a budget depending on the amount of money available and the long term investment benefit. Other varieties are Shiitake, Lions Mane, White Button and Portobello.

Environment: Different varieties require a different kind of environment. For example, the oyster mushroom has some basic environment requirement like temperature of 20°c, humidity of 90%, good ventilation, light and sanitation.

Get Spawn: You can produce your own spawn by using a sterile culture or you can by ready-to-inoculate spawns form the suppliers. Producing spawns can be cheaper in the long run, because the startup cost will be high in this case. You will need to have spawns to start the culture.

Prepare Substrate: You can use straw of paddy, wheat and ragi, stalk and leaves of maize millets and cotton, sugarcane bagasse, saw dust, jute and cotton waste, dried grasses, used tea leaf waste, etc.

Mushroom can be cultivated on a large number of agro-waste having cellulose and lignin that helps in more enzyme production of cellulose that is correlated with more yield.

You can also use some industrial waste like paper mill sludge, coffee byproducts, tobacco waste etc. Some of the popular method is steam pasteurization, hot water treatment, fermentation of composting and chemical sterilization.

Some of the popular method of substrate preparation is steam pasteurization, hot water treatment, fermentation of composting and chemical sterilization.

Pack the Bags/ Boxes/ Trays: The bag making process normally involves composting the substrate, filling the bags with composted material, spawning and then incubation till maturity stage.

Incubation: Arrange the spawned bags/ boxes/ trays in a dark cropping room on raised platform concentrate to stop any threats, any natural light getting into the room.

Fruiting: All require high humidity 80% during fruiting. Frequent spraying of water is necessary in the cropping room depending upon the environmental humidity.

Protection Measures: The crop is prone to fungal disease and also can have the diseases of yellow blotch, brown spot etc. You will need to have some specific control measure according to the attacks.

Harvesting & Storage: The right shape for harvesting can be judged by the shape and size of the fruit body. It is advisable to pick the mushrooms at one time from a cube.

There are two types of storage involves in mushroom processing long term and short term. Freshly harvested mushroom can be stored at low temperature (0-5°c) for maximum two weeks.

Dried mushroom with 2-4% moisture, can be stored for 4 months in sealed pouches without any change in taste.

Marketing: High quality commercial cultivation of mushroom is in good demand both in domestic and foreign market.

You can go for an export option. The export market for India is mainly the USA, with some quantities going to UAE, Germany, Russia, Switzerland, UK and other countries. To get updated information, you can join the association like www.mushroomsociety.in

Wishing you all the best,

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