Mushroom mycelia for protein

This solution was shared by PRE-LAUNCH RESEARCH TEAM , 14 May 2021

Print date: 01 October 2022 06:07

Description of the innovative solution

Alternative protein Circular economy Closing nutrient loop Urban farming Waste Urban planning Agricultural development Healthy diet

Production of protein by conventional animal-based systems is very resource intensive, with a high environmental impact. However, animal-based foods are desirable and in many countries, overconsumption is taking place and is projected to increase. We need to look for alternative solutions to supplement animal-based foods to fulfil the current and increasing demand for desirable proteins. Fungal mycelium has fast-growing fibres which can be used to create tasty meat-alternative products or nutrient-dense ingredients for animal feed and functional foods for human consumption. Also, non-food applications are possible: packaging, clothing. The fungi recycle nutrients through a specific fermentation process that digests their surrounding biomass. Food production side streams (i.e. rice husks, spent coffee grounds, fruit peels and sugarcane bagasse) can be used as growth material for the fungi. Hence, this solution can contribute to a circular economy, it produces limited waste (mostly compostable) and requires minimal energy consumption.

Supply chain segment

Agricultural inputs and primary production practices

Maturity level

Gaining traction

Criteria

Food quality Food affordability Climate mitigation Soil health Reducing biodiversity loss Increasing agrobiodiversity Reducing pollution

SDG target

SDG 2: Zero Hunger SDG 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities SDG 12: Responsible Consumption and Production

Context

Urban Peri-urban

Examples and additional resources

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Additional resources

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Beyond Impossible: How fungi could become our future protein source
News article, popular press or blog post
Blog article by Matt Newberg about the growing concern around the nutrition of plant-based meat substitutes and a potentially better solution in fungi
Shared by PRE-LAUNCH RESEARCH TEAM
Study showing immune activating properties of mycelium
Scientific paper
The mycelium of the Trametes versicolor (Turkey tail) mushroom and its fermented substrate each show potent and complementary immune activating properties in vitro
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Research note: Feed and food protein from higher Fungi Mycelia
Scientific paper
Report from the Higher Institute of Agriculture "Vasl Kolarov" in Bulgaria on the production of human food and animal feed protein from higher Fungi Mycelia from the wood mushroom, Polyporus squamosus-64
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blog article "Mycelium in Industry - Where can you get information, help, assistance?"
News article, popular press or blog post
useful resources of various types for all regions on engaging in this sector (for the small producer as well as investors)
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The Mycelium Revolution Is upon Us
News article, popular press or blog post
Scientific American blog article on directing the growth of mushroom fibers as an evolution in biofabrication stands to transform the way we manufacture, consume and live
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