Oyster mushroom cultivation boosts farmers’ incomes in Dewathang Gewog, Samdrup Jongkhar

Cultivating oyster mushrooms is emerging as a lucrative source of income for farmers in Dewathang Gewog of Samdrup Jongkhar. Farmers started cultivating mushrooms following a training a few months ago. Today, there are ten farmers who cultivate mushrooms on a commercial scale.

Phuntsho from Rikhey village is one of the farmers who underwent training on oyster mushroom cultivation. After the training, he then started a mushroom farm.

So far, he has harvested and sold about 70 kilogrammes of mushrooms earning him about Nu 14,000.

Phuntsho says until now, their livelihoods depended solely on rearing cattle and ginger cultivation. However, he said mushroom cultivation has become a source of additional income for the farmers.

“In the past, we did not cultivate mushrooms here. Now with the development of the country, we are provided with training so that we do not have to import mushrooms. We can be self-sufficient by cultivating mushrooms.”

Like him, other villagers have also picked their first harvest earning a few thousand ngultrum.

“We got the training and started cultivating mushrooms to earn some income. It is easier compared to other farming activities. Officials provided us with the seeds for the first season and for next season, I think we may have to buy the seeds,” said Ugyen Zangmo, a villager.

“It is profitable. Cultivating mushrooms is not so laborious as we just have to water them after they start to grow,” said Dechen Dema, another villager.

“Before we did not have any idea on how to cultivate mushrooms. The gewog administration provided training and we have cultivated mushrooms since it will be profitable,” said Tshering Jamtsho, who is from Bangtshio village.

For one kilogramme of oyster mushroom, they earn about Nu 150 to 200. They sell it in Dewathang and Samdrup Jongkhar towns.

Although only ten farmers cultivated mushrooms for commercial purposes, about 100 farmers got the training. The rest are cultivating the mushrooms just for self-consumption.

According to the Dewathang Gewog Agriculture Extension Officer, the shift towards oyster mushroom cultivation not only help them earn additional income but it also aligns with the aim of reducing dependence on imports and promoting self-sufficiency.

Related Posts