Mushrooms farming is gaining grounds in Nigeria, with a lot of people embracing this form of agriculture. A lot of varieties of mushroom abound, some edible and healthy while some are poisonous. Having this in mind, Chi Tola, one of the foremost mushroom farmers in Nigeria embarked on a training to sensitize the would be farmers the modern practice of mushroom farming, in line with global best practices.
In the words of Chi Tola, the CEO of Chi Tola Farms, she said that
” On-Farm Training at ChiTola Farms today. We bless God for the opportunity and privilege. A trainee came all the way from Kaduna. Mushroom for improved livelihoods.”
She added that “Its my little way of supporting and improving livelihoods. Individual commitment to what I do”
One of the participants, Felix Akin said that , ” this training has equipped me with the latest ways of growing mushroom and adding value to the product. I must confess, I enjoyed the experience and I am thanking the organisers of this training”, he concluded.
According to National Farmers Information Service (NAFIS) , the benefits and Importance of Mushroom Cultivation:
The Importance of Mushroom Cultivation
Protein content, 3-7% when fresh and 25- 40% when dry. Contain all essential amino acids, amides and lysine.
Consumption of mushrooms slows down the spread and effect of cancer, heart disease, HIV/AIDS (by boosting immune system).
Income generation and Employment creation.
Use of idle structures,
Involvement of small initial capital,
Possible production all the year round
Use of Agricultural waste as substrate- mostly waste materials from farms, plantations or factories.
Is a Biodegrader hence environmental con-server.
Consumption benefits of mushrooms.
Contain all essential amino acids
Has Vit.C, cynocobalimin (Vit,B12) content found only in animal products
Low in sodium ideal for people with heart and kidney ointments.
Have iron, calcium, potassium, phosphorus and folic acid.
Though with Challenges in Mushroom Growing such as; Lack of skills on mushroom production, Spawn is expensive and quality not guaranteed, Lack of awareness of benefits of mushroom and Traditional beliefs of some communities. Nigeria , a country that is populated by Christians and Muslims, mushroom is acceptable by these two dominant faith. Nigerians today are becoming health conscious and have come to terms with the dangers of consumption of red meat, making mushroom the new cool in protein requirements in the country .
The free training exposed the trainees with the latest technology in mushroom farming and all participants went home free starter kits .
Anthony Emeka Nwosu