Mushroom is a unique gift of nature and the only non-green crop cultivated for commerce in the world. It is the fruit body of a fungus and is a rich source of vegetable protein diet. Mushrooms are cultivated indoors in a thatched shed or inside a cropping room. It is grown on agricultural wastes like wheat straw, paddy straw, saw dust, sugarcane bagasse, etc. There are thousands of types of mushrooms growing in nature and only a small number of these are edible. Some edible mushrooms have been domesticated and are now cultivated under controlled conditions indoors. Every mushroom has its own specific requirement for growth and nutrition. Different mushrooms require different raw materials as its substrate for growth

Environmental conditions required are also unique for each type of mushroom. Commonly cultivated varieties of mushroom are button mushroom, oyster mushroom, milky mushroom, paddy straw mushroom and others. White button mushroom is the most commonly cultivated mushroom in the world, including India. Button mushroom is grown during the winter months in North Western Plains of India as a seasonal crop in thatched huts when outside climate is suitable for its cultivation. Many environment controlled farms have also come up, wherein button mushrooms are cultivated round this year. Kabul dhingri, Pleurotus eryngii, earlier collected from natural habitats in the hills of Afghanistan and Himalayan ranges, has been the connoisseur’s choice. It is now being cultivated indoors under controlled conditions with good yields. This mushroom can also be cultivated in winter season alongwith button mushroom crop as both have similar conditions for growth. Milky mushroom is cultivated in summer season at a temperature range of 28-35°C. In coastal regions of India where high temperature together with high relative humidity is prevalent in summer months, paddy straw mushroom Volvariella spp. is cultivated under seasonal growing conditions.

Natural Food :