Don’t burn rice straws and earn more money
Burning rice straws to clear the fields after harvest is not advisable.
The Philippine Rice Research Institute says farmers can earn more money if they keep the rice straws and use them to grow oyster mushroom.
“Bulk of the rice biomass produced is still being disposed indiscriminately despite its many known uses. Using rice straw as mushroom substrate is economically profitable for farmers and people engaged in agribusiness,” says Rizal Corales of PhilRice’s Palayamanan Plus program.
And even after the mushrooms are harvested, the farmers should still keep the substrate and make even more money.
“The waste from mushroom production is also the main substrate for vermicomposting, one of the best organic fertilizers produced,” Corales adds.
Even if mushroom growing and vermicomposting seem to be a handful, please do keep the rice straws still.
According to PhilRice, the Philippines produces 15.2M tons of rice that leave 11.3M tons of rice straw every year. PhilRice said the rice straws can be used by farmers as organic fertilizer by mixing it with other biomass farm by-products and save on chemical fertilizer inputs.
The rice straws can also be used as mulch to keep the weeds out and protect the plants roots from heat and cold. (By: Eileen A. Mencias)