Volume 13 Part 2 Article 53: Edible Mushroom Cultivation for Rural Development in Tropical America

Volume 13 Part 2 Article 53
Year 1991
Title: Edible Mushroom Cultivation for Rural Development in Tropical America
Authors: D. Martfnez-Carrera, R Morales, M. Sobal, S.T. Chang, and A. Larqué-Saavedra


This work deals with the development of applied research in order to introduce the biotechnology of mushroom cultivation in Mexican rural development. The selected communities are located in the Cuetzalan region, in the northern mountains from the State of Puebla, Mexico. Such communities are grouped in a well organized cooperative of about 120,000 members (8,600 families), who are mainly dedicated to coffee and pepper production, and corn cultivation for self-consumption. Members are bilingual speaking both one of the two Mexican indian languages (Nahuatlan or Totonac) and Spanish. A mushroom farm (300 m2) was built for Pleurotus cultivation according to the climate conditions, based on a simple design and using easily available regional materials. The objectives of this farm were to operate as a central unit for people training, and to cultivate Pleurotus mushrooms at community level. Training courses on the cultivation of edible mushrooms on regional agricultural wastes have been carried out. More than 100 participants have been trained. Mushroom production at community level is of 60-70 kg/week. Participation of peasant women in mushroom cultivation was emphasized. Mushroom cultivation offers defined benefits for rural development. This community can be used as a model to other peasant groups not only in Mexico, but also in Latin America where social and economical conditions are similar.

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