How Trichoderma affects mushroom growers

Mushroom growers face many challenges to protect their crop. One of the main issues that causes large crop losses in Europe is the presence of Trichoderma.

Trichoderma, or green moulds can cause serious problems in mushroom cultivation. Issues with Tirchoderma harzianum are especially prominent during Fall and occurs most frequent during later flushes. In this article we take a closer look at this problem and the ways BVB Substrates casing soil helps growers overcome this issue.

Yield and quality loss

The spores and mycelium of the green moulds of the Trichoderma species directly compete with the mushroom mycelium. Tirchoderma harzianum grows incredibly fast. Because of that it takes away a large amount of the nutrients, leaving the mushrooms with too little. This results in loss in available growing space and infected and spotted mushrooms that can no longer be marketed.

Hygiene and safety measures

Trichoderma harzianum can start growing on casing surfaces due to multiple factors. High humidity, too low pH-level within the casing soil or poor ventilation can be of influence. Accidental introduction of spores from outside are the main source of contamination. The main issue with this is that the spores have properties that make it hard to get rid of the problem. The green moulds produce small, sticky surfaced spores that are incredibly resilient. Thanks to the sticky surfaces the spores do not only spread by air, but they also attach to equipment, mushroom pickers and flies. This enables them to spread quickly and easily throughout the entire production location, which makes it even harder to get rid of the infection.

Throughout the entire production chain measures are taken to combat this mould. Firstly, growers use steam treatments to disinfect their cells at the end of each growing cycle and use strict hygienic protocols for their personnel and equipment. Secondly, compost producers prepare and treat their products with great care to make them suitable for mushroom cultivation. And finally, casing soil producers take a lot of safety measures to prevent infection and ensure safe transportation. Have a look at this article if you would like to read more about the measures we take for our BVB Substrates casing soil. Lately we have been working on another way to help growers fight Trichoderma harzianum through our products.

Specialised casing soil: BVB Casing Protect

A recently developed, specialised product line by BVB Substrates helps growers overcome Trichoderma harzianum issues. The casing soil is mainly made of the same high quality raw materials growers that use BVB Casing soil are used to. We have, however introduced some new components to provide added protection. With new production methods we are proud to introduce this new type of casing soil that reduces green mould issues. BVB Casing Protect is not available in all markets yet.

Contact your Sales Advisor to learn more about the possibilities for your farm!