DA to Mass Produce Edible Mushrooms

Manila Bulletin, August 6, 2005 | Go to article overview

DA to Mass Produce Edible Mushrooms


Byline: MELODY M. AGUIBA

The Department of Agriculture (DA) is mass producing edible mushrooms as demand for the protein-rich product can be developed while sustaining livelihood for many homebased farmers in Malasique, Pangasinan.

Alice Ilaga, DA biotechnology program chief, said in a statement that new technologies have allowed for growing of mushrooms with little space and investment.

"The latest trend in agricultural innovation is just proof that Filipino farmers are now developing ways to explore products to alleviate poverty. This mushroom technology needs less open space. Mushrooms can be grown in enclosed indigenous structures and with minimal capital," she said.

The Biba-Diwa MultiPurpose Cooperative (BDMPC) in Malasiqui, Pangasinan has started managing a mushroom spawning facility which makes use of bamboos that enable harvest in just three weeks. Edible mushrooms also spawn on banana leaves and saw dust.

Aside from growing mushrooms, BDMPC has engaged in spawning abalone, oyster, and banana mushrooms, also called volvarela, in darkened enclosures.

Fernando Lopez, BDMPC chairman, said Pangasinans mushroom farming is hoped to boost supply of mushroom in public markets not only in supermarkets where consumers can afford to buy higher priced products.

"People tend to develop a taste for a food item if aside from being a qualified delicacy, the supply is reliable and the cost is reasonable. …

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