Sanjeev Singh from Punjab started growing mushrooms from organic compost in 1992, eventually growing hundreds of tons of the produce, which earned him the title ‘Mushroom King of Punjab’.
At the time, Sanjeev was not aware of any person practicing mushroom farming at the time, which added to the challenge of having to experiment and learn all by himself. Then, there was also a general lack of awareness about mushrooms. The spawns were unavailable locally and needed to be brought in from Delhi.
The farmer began growing mushrooms seasonally, which helped him earn additional income alongside conventional farming. For eight years, he struggled with growing good quality mushrooms and establishing a stable market.
Over the years, his production has increased to harvesting about 700 kgs of mushrooms a day, and he now earns Rs 12.5 mln (€137,500) a year.
According to Sanjeev, the reason behind his success has been the lucrative market for mushrooms. “Mushrooms have a high market potential. The pressure of having limited space on land to grow food is increasing. Vertical farming, used for growing mushrooms, can help save that space. I also earn more — Rs 10 mln from two acres of land. It would have taken about 200 acres of land to earn the same amount of money through conventional farming,” he told thebetterindia.com.
Photo source: Dreamstime.com