Friday, 22 January 2021 14:11

Mushroom farm equipment - why can only well-invested farms bring satisfactory profits?

Mushroom farm Mushroom farm

The most profitable mushroom farms never stand still - they invest in professional equipment that, in the long term, allows them to harvest more mushrooms, reduce the cost of harvesting and do it more efficiently without the need for continuous servicing of equipment, so as to earn more and save their time.

 

In this article we will try to answer the question: what elements of the mushroom farm's equipment are necessary to make it not only a modern but, above all, a viable project.

Mushroom farm equipment

Well-selected mushroom picking lorries unconditionally increase the yield. Therefore, it is best to invest in as ergonomic lorries as possible, which will increase efficiency and accelerate harvesting, through appropriate construction solutions (e.g., automation of the movement of the lorry platform or solutions facilitating picking from the bottom shelf of the rack). As a result, we harvest more, with lower labor costs (in the same unit of time we can pick more, with lower number of employees) - which is crucial for running this business. By choosing a high-quality lorry, you also guarantee high safety for your employees, while at the same time increasing the speed of picking.

Mushroom farm lamps

It should be noted that not every lamp is suitable for use in mushroom farms,

in which a form of disinfection through room evaporation is used, as they do not meet the waterproofing requirement (IP68). This requires the use of a higher-quality lamp that will work seamlessly and reliably for years, and we will not waste time on its continuous servicing and will eliminate the cost of purchasing more lamps. As a result, by betting on high quality lamps once, over the years we save not only money, but also time.

Mushroom growing shelving

In this respect, two key aspects should be taken into account: the dimensions (depending on the size of the harvest) and the material from which they were made. When choosing mushrooms racks made of aluminum, as a general rule we only buy them once, for the entire life of our mushroom farm. Aluminum is not corrosive; therefore, such shelves have a virtually unlimited lifetime. The need for replacement can only be caused by ourselves, through mechanical damage, and given their high strength, it is very difficult. Properly selected aluminum shelves for a mushroom farm reflect light, which causes better light scattering in the growing rooms, which in turn increases the quality/ergonomics and the harvesting speed.

Growing nets

Growing nets are used for pulling the substrate onto the shelves and pulling it out after usage, i.e., after a finite cultivation cycle of 4-5 weeks. Good quality growing nets retain their proper properties for up to 15 years, as the material is highly durable, ensures proper airflow, does not pull out and does not excessively narrow or damage during normal operation. The need to replace once every 15 years is a very long lifetime, compared to cheap nets, which need to be replaced as often as once a year.

Mushroom scales

In this case, it is also worth betting on durability - both in terms of the mechanics and electronics, with which each scale is equipped. A scale from the low price range will serve us six months to a year. For just a little more money, we will receive a two-year producer guarantee, which guarantees us a smooth and seamless operation in the long term.

We can also choose scales that don’t need to be charged, that is, scales that run on batteries, which should be replaced only once every several months (every 1000-1500 h). Despite the higher unit price of such scale (compared to low-quality low-cost scales), in this case we save on electricity and the working time of the employee (we eliminate the possibility of damaging the charger or its wire/plug), who does not have to include charging the scale in his duties. We also gain a portable and economical device.

Mushroom farm climate control

Medium and higher quality mushroom farm climate control systems provide higher yields and homogeneity of harvesting, control over all stages of the growth of mushrooms, as well as smaller system failure rate, ease of use and safety. In this case, the difference in the cost of purchase pays itself back very fast, because the best systems mean savings on ventilation, heating and cooling, while maintaining the highest mushroom quality.

Mushroom picking knives

The cost of purchasing mushroom picking knives is a cost of a few to a dozen zlotys. These are neither high costs nor large differences. In turn, the service life of the latter is several times higher. These of the best quality ensure very long operation without potential damage - knife blades do not dull so quickly and handles withstand longer service life.

Watering system

By using an automated watering system mounted under the shelves of the shelving, we reduce the workforce by providing optimized watering throughout the mushroom growing period. The irrigation system is controlled by a controller and computer, without the need for human intervention. In the fully advanced ones, we have remote control access, directly from the screen of our smartphone or iPad. This is a must-have in a well-equipped mushroom farm. Equally important, the automated watering system mounted under the shelves of the shelving guarantees more precise hydration, adequate water per square meter and homogeneity of the harvest. Despite higher initial costs (compared to the traditional so-called “watering tree” system, which is handled by the operator) in the perspective of time proves much more profitable and pays itself back after about 1-2 years, and after that period only earns.

Growing tunnel covers

The quality of the materials used to cover the tunnels has a significant impact on their service life. Top-quality coverings last 10-15 years and longer and don’t get penetrated, don’t damage due to atmospheric conditions, hole formation doesn’t occur in them, and they continue to function successfully.

Running a mushroom farm is a demanding business. We cannot afford to act hastily and carelessly in this case. Only an investment in good quality mushroom farm equipment will allow you to earn more in the long term, thanks to sufficiently high yields, lower production and harvesting costs and more efficient mushroom farm operation.

Quality equipment should come from a proven supplier. Comprehensive, modern, fully professional, high-quality mushroom farm equipment that meets all technical standards can be found in GROWTIME's offer. Thanks to its many years of presence on the market and experience, GROWTIME knows how to reduce fixed costs that are generated every day in newly built and modernized mushroom farms.

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