Upcycled mushrooms is a small scale mushroom farm in Bristol selling a range of exotic and unusual mushrooms for restaurants and cafes. It has been developing a system of seasonal growing to cut out much of the unnecessary energy in maintaining artificial conditions used by many other growers. Although not certified organic, Upcycled Mushrooms grow completely without the use of artificial fertilisers or pesticides. It also uses outdoor fruiting options which complement the plants and wildlife around them by regenerating and building soil fertility and increasing biodiversity. All the mushrooms are produced under natural light conditions, which enables all the nutritional and medicinal benefits of them to fully develop.
The main ethos of Upcycled Mushrooms is to use up and recycle as many waste products from the local area as possible. It does this by converting them into food for fungi or reusing them within the growing system. One of the main products that is recycled is woodchip, which is used to grow your mushrooms and has come from the waste of local tree surgeons. Also added to the food for the fungi is sawdust, which has come from a local furniture maker. All the other ingredients are sourced as locally as possible. It is not just the ingredients used to create the mushrooms that is recycled, I have moved to using reusable plastic boxes for fruiting the oyster mushrooms from, which has cut the amount of disposable plastic going to landfill significantly. I'm also looking for potential ways to grow my own straw based food for the oyster mushrooms on site to cut the food miles from source.
Upcycled mushrooms is part of the larger Feed Bristol site based in Stapleton, Bristol. The site aims to champion sustainable food growing in an urban setting, combining conservation and food production into one model. Much more info about the site can be found here: http://www.avonwildlifetrust.org.uk/feedbristol
Upcycled mushrooms is a member of the Land Workers Alliance, a union for small scale agroecological farmers and workers. This is the UK division of La Via Campesina which aim to protect and fight for the rights of traditional farmers globally. Upcycled mushrooms is also a member of the British Mycological Society.