An interesting project underway in Nepal is ASHA’s mushroom-growing initiative. Since mushrooms can be grown inside the home, mushroom-growing can be practiced by even landless farmers and older people who may not be physically able to grow other types of crops. After some small-scale farmers expressed interest in the project, ASHA organized a 3-day-long training in organic oyster mushroom production. 33 women farmers from 4 different groups participated in the training.
To sharpen farmers’ knowledge and understandings of mushroom farming, a day trip was organized to visit a mushroom farm in the nearby municipality of Banepa. All 33 women participated in the excursion where they had the opportunity to see mushroom farming in action and learn about different methods and techniques. The trip also provided a valuable opportunity for the participants to interact with the farmers and share their experiences. ASHA staff also advised the women on how to best market their products at the local market in Banepa.
ASHA also facilitated a 1-day training to 67 women members of 3 groups, including the mushroom farmers, on the importance of eating a balanced diet, especially for children and pregnant women, and the nutritional value of various crops and fruits. Mushrooms are a great crop for these small scale-scale farmers to grow because not only are they nutritious but they are profitable and relatively easy to grow.
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IDEX Latin America Program Director