Waste to wealth MUSHROOM CULTIVATION
17th August, 2015
The greatest difficulty in feeding man is to supply a sufficient quantity of the body- building material i.e protein. The other three nutritional categories are: the source of energy food (carbohydrates and fats), accessory food factors (vitamins) and inorganic compounds which are indispensable to good health. Water is of course essential (Chang and Buswell, 2003). In addition to their good proteins, mushrooms are a relatively good source of the following individual nutrients: fat, phosphorus, iron and vitamins including thiamine, riboflavin, ascorbic acid, ergosterine and niacin. They are low in calories, carbohydrates and calcium.
In ancient Egypt, people consider mushroom as the plant of immortality, and the Pharaohs, respecting its delicious flavors, decreed that mushroom should not be touched by commoners.
Today, the science of mushroom has been fully developed for many species in the developed countries in Europe, North America and Asia. For example Agaricus bisporus,mostly produced in North America and European countries. Volvariella volvacea produced in china, Taiwan, Japan, the Philippines and Indonesia. Oyster mushroom Pleurotus ostreatus, P. pulmonarius produced in Asia, Italy and Hungary. The Jew’s ear Auricularia auricula is produced in China for centuries. While these countries are now deriving a great economic benefits (in mushroom exports) and increased the dietary of their people, Nigeria is still behind in this regard. Only a few smart entrepreneurs are into the production of mushroom in Nigeria, however this is not enough to meet the high demands of the health oriented public. There is alot of demand for Mushrooms in Nigeria due to the continous increase in population.
Mushroom is a nutritious vegetarian delicacy and has many varieties. Most of them are edible. It contains many vitamins and minerals but very low on sugar and fat. It can be grown in a temperature between 20 and 30 C and required relative humidity is 55 to 75%. Hence, North-East region has very good prospects of cultivation as well as processing. Fresh mushrooms can be sold in the market. There is also growing market for processed – dried and packed – mushrooms as their shelf life is longer. There are two main varieties of mushroom viz. button type and oyster. Oyster mushrooms are easy to cultivate and process and do not require huge investment. Hence, this note deals with cultivation and processing of oyster mushrooms.
APPLICATION
Mushroom is an exotic and nutritious source of vegetarian food. It is a major horticulture product all over the world and is also becoming popular in India. Fresh mushrooms have very long shelf life but dried .
MARKET POTENTIAL
Mushroom is a vegetarian delicacy and a suitable substitute for meat and eggs. It is easily digestible as well. It is very popular in most of the developed countries and being accepted in many developing countries like India. Market for mushrooms is growing rapidly because of their nice aroma, subtle flavor, nutritious values and special taste. Many exotic preparations are made from them like soup, pickles, vegetables etc. It is also used for stuffing several food preparations and for garnishing. But its consumption is still confined to urban and semi urban population. Mushrooms have very short life after harvesting and hence they are sold in fresh form. Their shelf life can be enhanced by processing them. Processed mushrooms are packed in special quality polythene bags or Canned. This variety can be sold to far off places.
Consumption of mushrooms is increasing in the Nigeria.
SOME BENEFIT OF MUSHROOM BIOTECHNOLOGY
(1) Mushrooms offer tremendous applications as they can be used as food and medicines besides their key ecological roles. They represent as one of the world’s greatest untapped resources of nutrition and palatable food of the future. Mushrooms have been found effective against HIV, cancer, cholesterol reduction, stress, insomnia, asthma, allergies and diabetes (Bobek and Galbavy, 1999)
(2) The demand for mushroom is higher than supply all over the world. (here lies a great opportunity for those that are smart).
(3) Mushrooms are very cheap to cultivate, they grow on waste substances such as, Sawdust, Wood shavings, Cotton waste, Rice bran, Wheat bran, Yam peels, Cassava peels and other ago-industrial wastes.
(4) Mushrooms are relatively fast growing organisms. Some tropical mushrooms can be harvested and consumed within 10 days after spawning.
(5) You do not need a land, a room is enough to start with.
(6) Thus the activity can generate new jobs, especially in tropical or less developed countries.
(7) The return on investment is 500%!
18077
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Niger, Nigeria
  • Mushroom Cultivation

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