Young man “falls in love” with caterpillar fungi

Update: 17:37 | 20/03/2019

(BGO) The young man Ong The Dung born in 1994 (in the photo) living at Dai Dong hamlet, Dong Hung commune is the pioneer of Luc Nam district, Bac Giang province gaining success in caterpillar fungi cultivation, thereby expanding the high-tech agricultural production at the local. 

When he was a student of Hanoi University of Industry, Dung showed great interest in this kind of medicine named caterpillar fungus (Dong chongxizcao). After graduating in 2016, Dung started studying this precious fungus through books, newspaper and media. 

Young man, Bac Giang province, caterpillar fungi, Ong The Dung, caterpillar fungi cultivation, high-tech agricultural production, Vietnamese silkworm

Ong The Dung.

At his field visits to the caterpillar fungi cultivation models in Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City and Lai Chau province, he found it was a valuable medicinal fungus which can help to cure a number of diseases and improve the health, then he decided to cultivate caterpillar fungi with Vietnamese silkworm.

At the very beginning, he faced many difficulties because the first batches of fungi did not grow as expected. For the first months of culturing, about 4,000 jars of seedings got diseases and spoilt due to inappropriate culturing techniques, temperature, light and humidity conditions.

Caterpillar fungus is a type of precious medicine, which can only grow in the natural environment of high mountains. It is the symbiosis of a type of fungus and larva. In winter, the fungi live in the larvae and kill them by eating out all of their nutrition. In warm summer, they grow out of the dead larvae like grasses through the soil surface.

Young man, Bac Giang province, caterpillar fungi, Ong The Dung, caterpillar fungi cultivation, high-tech agricultural production, Vietnamese silkworm

Ong The Dung talks to a representative of the provincial Youth Union about caterpillar fungi cultivation process.

Caterpillar fungus culturing must be done in an artificial environment with non-toxic materials without additives such as brown rice, silkworm, potato and other substrates. The production process includes the steps of sterilizing, cooling, seeding, putting breeds into the scaffold, planting, feeding and harvesting. The culturing period lasts from 65 to 70 days. The products must be dark yellow in color and grow well at 6 to 10-centimetre length.

Currently, Dung cultivates caterpillar fungi in a 40-square metre area with 4,000 jars of seeding. He can harvest from 30 to 40 kilos of fresh caterpillar fungi at the price of 5 million VND (215 USD) per each kilo of fresh fungi and 50 million VND (2,154 USD) per each kilo of dried fungi.


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