A 24-year-old ryot turns mushroom farming profitable in Telangana

The mushroom beds are then taken to a dark room with no external exposure to air, light or water.
A 24-year-old ryot turns mushroom farming profitable in Telangana

MAHABUBABAD: While leaders across the country urge the nation’s youngsters to be self-enterprising and not depend on anyone else for a job, a 24-year-old woman in Thorrur town is a testament to the fact that one can succeed even when the odds are stacked against them. While agriculture is considered a risky vocation given climate change, inadequate governmental support and the threat of pests, this young woman’s steely resolve has ensured that she not only does well in mushroom farming but also goes above and beyond in showing how the right technique and proper know-how takes one ahead even in a field like farming.

A biochemistry graduate from Nalgonda district, K Yamini Yadav, started preparing for competitive exams after earning her Bachelor’s degree to earn her livelihood. However, subsequent delays in the announcement of exam notifications left her hopeless. Still, she didn’t lose hope and decided to put what she had learned into practice and start a business.

Speaking to TNIE, she says she chose to take up mushroom cultivation at her home and is now earning enough to manage her family’s finances. Not only that, but she is also exporting her harvest to other states. “I had an idea of mushroom farming but took time to understand the process. I told about it to my husband and explained to him my entire plan,” Yamini adds.

With her husband’s investment of `2 lakh–`3 lakh in the business, the 24-year-old began mushroom farming at her residence on a small scale. Explaining the process, she says mushroom seeds, brought from Bengaluru, are planted on a bed. Subsequently, paddy straws are chopped into two-inch pieces and then boiled. With a 30% moisture content, the straws are placed on the mushroom bed underneath polypropylene covers. The mushroom beds are then taken to a dark room with no external exposure to air, light or water. After 21 days, the mushroom crop begins to mature and is ready to bag, she adds. “We add black soil to the mushroom bed, and it takes one week for the mushrooms to emerge from the soil. Then, we begin the harvesting process and export them,” Yamini explains.

The 24-year-old highlights the importance of mushrooms as nutrient supplements, given their high medicinal and pharmaceutical value. However, rural communities often lack awareness of the nutritional benefits of mushrooms, she adds, adding that they are trying to educate locals about the value and potential of mushroom-based food. “Soon after, I got a good response from my family and neighbours. I started receiving orders from Warangal, Hyderabad and Bengaluru,” she adds.

She exports 40 kg–80 kg every month. “I am thinking of extending my business,” Yamini mentions.

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