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Wanted : quality mushroom spores

1279 Myanmar Times
Mushroom cultivation after the monsoon paddy harvest is expanding, and access to good spores is a must, mushroom growers said last week.
"It is very important that we get quality mushroom spores. But we don't know if the spores we buy are good or not_ there's no quality assurance" said Ko Myo, 18, from Sabe gone village in Htantabin township, Yangon Region. "It we get good spores, our profit is high. But if the spores are not good, no mushrooms grow. We spend about K150,000 to cultivate 20 rows of mushrooms".
"A program that can help us get quality spores and improve cultivation techniques would be very helpful. At the moment, trying to get good quality spores is like playing the lottery," said Sabe Gone resident Daw Aye Ma, adding that a mushroom grower can earn about K2 million in a single season.
Mushrooms are cultivated from December to March, following the monsoon paddy harvest. Most growers are landless people, who grow mushrooms in empty paddy fields with the permission of the landowner.
"This year, some villagers asked to grow mushrooms on my paddy field. They will start growing next week," said U Khin Ngwe, 60, from Kathabaung village in Twante township. "We can't grow summer paddy because of a lack of water, so I'm happy to let them grow mushrooms on my field."
A viss of mushroom at Yangon's Thirimingalar market sells for between K 3000 and K 5000 (1 viss equals 1.6 kg of 3.6 pound).

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