Every now and then you come across an idea that keeps on reappearing in different guises. An idea I keep stumbling across right now is growing mushrooms on food waste. Spent coffee grounds, to be specific.
Here in Bath, our friend Hugh Prentice started a business (Fungi Fruits) last year growing oyster mushrooms in the vaults underneath the Farmers Market at Green Park. He and colleagues cycle round the numerous coffee shops of Bath collecting their grounds, and transform them into delicious mushrooms, which they then sell on to local restaurants and hotels and of course to us at the Farmers Market.
Forget food miles, we’re talking food feet (or metres if you prefer).
Then for Christmas, younger son and daughter-in-law gave us a kit to grow our own (oyster) mushrooms on coffee grounds.
We’re looking forward to our first harvest later this week.
Brilliant, and all very local.
And then I heard a truly inspiring BBC Radio 4 Food Programme about an extraordinary young Zimbabwean woman who has also discovered the power of growing mushrooms from waste, providing not only herself but many other orphans with an income, enabling them to have an education and helping protect them from exploitation.
She has overcome huge personal adversity and has inspired an organisation (The Future of Hope Foundation) enabling other Zimbabwean children to follow this path. Her name is Chido Govera, and you can read more about her story and the project here. And I think you will be as in awe and as inspired by her as I am.