Mushrooms grow from coffee – level 3

13-06-2022 07:00

A Belgian company named PermaFungi is transforming used coffee grounds into edible mushrooms and insulation tiles.

At a former industrial site in Brussels, workers harvest oyster mushrooms that grow mainly on coffee grounds and straw. The straw stops the mushrooms from growing on urban waste.

The company collects 5.5 tons of coffee waste every month from cafes across the country. Workers mix the coffee grounds in a large drum, they add the mushroom parts, and then they transfer the mixture to small bags. After 15 days, they harvest the mushrooms.

PermaFungi uses the residue from their oyster mushroom farms to create a biodegradable material that can replace plastic. They add mycelium. The company says that their method of growing mushrooms could dramatically reduce urban waste.

Governments around the world prioritize the idea of the circular economy, and mycelium insulation tiles could be a solution.

Difficult words: residue (something that remains after the main part is taken or used), mycelium (the root-like structure of a mushroom), circular economy (a system that intends to limit consumption and waste).

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