Fresh Shiitake Production Process

1) Main ingredients
Wood chips 78%, bran 20%, gypsum powder 10%, nutrient 10%. All of the above ingredients must be fresh and make sure there is no moldy and worm-free. Basically, we mainly use pine or fir and aromatic wood ships. Camphor wood chips cannot be used for mushroom cultivating.

2) Liquid ingredient
First, mix the above main ingredients together as the cultivation ingredients, then add water into it with more than 65% of the volume, stir it uniformly, finally warm dry the mixed ingredients until it is not dripping wet, but only in damp.

3) Plastic bag packing
After that, the cultivation ingredients will be moved to the packing machine to have a plastic bag pack. There are 5 workers to finish packing process. During packing process, the tightness must be controlled well. If it is stuffed too loose, it will be easy to fracture after mushroom grows out of the bag; if too tight and too much stuffing, the bag will be broken because of ingredients heating expansion during sterilizing, meanwhile, it can affect the growth of mycelium and perhaps be contaminated with bacteria.

4) Sterilization
After cultivation ingredients well packing in bag, we will take a sterilization treatment immediately for the ingredient so as to prevent bacterial growth. The bags must be put in the pot careful, one by one from bottom to the top so that make sure the air flows between bags, otherwise, it will cause a dead corner without complete sterilization. Start the fire & let the temperature rise to 100 degrees Celsius in the shortest time. If the temperature is not high enough in a very short time, it will cause the ingredients to become acid and cannot be used any more. During sterilizing process, the workers must keep watching the water level & temperature change as well as if there’s leakage or not. When the temperature in the pot reaches 100 degrees Celsius, the fire will be adjusted to medium grade while sterilization will be kept for about 24 hours. After that, fire will be maintained for 10 more hours, then turn off the fire and let the remain heat in the pot kill the bacteria and finally move out the bags from the pot after they cool down.

5) Inoculation
After sterilization, the ingredients bags must be moved to inoculation room. It can start to inoculate the shiitake spawn when the bags temperature down to 28 degrees Celsius. All the tools must be sterilized by the mist disinfector while the operators must clean their hands and all surface by 75% concentration of ethyl alcohol before inoculating so that ensure it’s in a condition of no any bacteria. The shiitake spawn must be intact into a block, which is beneficial to mycelium’s germination and survival. Inoculation process must be accomplished rapidly so as to prevent bacteria immersed. Meanwhile, avoiding anybody walking around indoors of inoculation room during inoculating process, otherwise it will affect the quality of the inoculation. Now the spawn has been distributed throughout the bag. The mouth of the bag should be closed with rubber band. We called the ingredients bag with shiitake spawn as “mycelium bar”

6) Turn over the mycelium bar regularly and mycelium developing
It needs to turn over the mycelium bar for many times during cultivating period. When the mycelium diameter develops up to 6-8cm but meanwhile the temperature of the bar pile reaches 20 ~ 26 degrees Celsius, turn over the mycelium bars for the first time- Cut some slightly larger hole in the bag, and then pile up the bars for a “田” shape. For the next turning-overs, gradually reduce the number of bars as well as lower down the height of each pile. It takes 50-60 days for mycelium cultivation. After the mycelia matures, it will rise some waves or form few primordia. When the surface of mycelia and primordia are brown color, jab some holes on the bar and have a color change handling process. Control the temperature is below 25 degrees Celsius, and strengthen the ventilation of the room.

7) Shiitake forming management
After color change handling process, the mycelia have extremely rich in nutrition and its vitality is strong. For this stage, control the temperature difference between day and night to stimulate the hypha to transform the nutrition and make the mycelia intertwined and kinked together to form the primordia. Later on, the primordia turn into the shiitake bud. When the temperature is above 15 degrees Celsius, the shiitake bud can grow up to be the mushroom. Keep the humidity on around 85%, after 3-5 days, shiitakes can be picked.

8) Shiitake picking
When the rim of shiitake is curled and pointing down, while the velum is clearly visible, it is the best time for picking. Pick the big ones left the small ones, then timely move them to warehouse to have further inspection and sorting.