Azienda Agricola Mannu: mushrooms and fertiliser from coffee grounds
One thing Italy definitely has a lot of is coffee grounds...
Coffee grounds actually contain many nutrients which are excellent for growing mushrooms. This secondary raw material is even ready for use, having been sterilised at 80 to 90°C by the coffee machine. What's left once the mushrooms have been collected is a good fertiliser.
Azienda Agricola Mannu collects the coffee grounds from bars, and then adds mycelium and coffee parchment, the film which covers coffee beans. The mixture is placed inside 5 kilogram perforated PE bags. The bags are hung in a dark incubation chamber at between 16 and 20°C. They are then taken to another chamber where the mushrooms grow in the light, with optimal humidity and CO2 levels. Once the mushrooms have been harvested, the remaining growing medium is placed in a compost bin, and after maturing for another 6 to 8 months it will become a splendid fertiliser.
In a single year of production, more than 5 tons of coffee grounds were collected and about 300 kg of mushrooms harvested.