Learn About the process: Oyster Mushrooms
We believe in producing living food, in touch with nature. That's why we grow our oyster mushrooms using locally sourced substrates and fresh rainwater.
Substrate is the medium on which mushroom Mycelium grows and gets its energy and nutrients. We use locally sourced wheat and barley straw as the basis for our oyster mushroom substrate.
We first chop the straw into smaller pieces to allow mushroom Mycelium to better digest it. The chopped straw is then packed into a tank and soaked in a lime water solution. The lime raises the ph level of the water and forces other competing organisms such as mold spores and bacteria that are present on the straw to go into a state of hibernation. After being drained, the ph of the straw begins to drop, as the lime water reacts with Co2 in the air to become neutral.
Inoculating the Substrate:
After the straw has been pasteurized, we pack the substrate into reusable tubs and layer it with a small amount of grain spawn. This is akin to the 'seed' that the mushroom mycelium grows from and consists of heat sterilized grain kernels which have been fully colonized with mycelium. Depending on a number of factors, including availability and species of mushroom strain being grown, we either make our spawn on site or source it from Australian suppliers.
Once the buckets are packed and inoculated, they are moved them to our grow rooms. These can best be described as a happy medium between commercial production and nature. In commercial systems, mushrooms are grown under artificial lights, with filtered air, chlorinated water and carefully controlled environmental conditions. Our mushrooms grow in dappled sunlight and fresh air and are misted with fresh UV filtered rainwater. We vary the strains we grow to suit climatic conditions in the summer/winter.
After a few weeks, the mushroom mycelium has fully colonized the substrate and mushrooms begin to pin from pre-drilled holes.
The Mushrooms grow quickly and are soon ready for harvest. We carefully harvest each clump and pack them ready for market. To avoid waste, any excess is dehydrated and sold as either whole dried mushroom or mushroom powder.
After subsequent flushes, the bucket has finished fruiting. The mushroom compost is emptied to be used as a nutritional mulch in gardens and the bucket is washed and dried, ready to start the process again with fresh straw and spawn.