Croydon Urban Mushrooms collects waste coffee grounds from local cafes and uses them as a substrate to grow delicious, healthy, gourmet oyster mushrooms – branded as Croydon Oyster mushrooms or Cr’Oysters. The mushrooms are then sold to individuals or to food establishments to create income to re-invest in the business to make it sustainable and in the future operate with a surplus so that other environmental and social projects can be funded and also the many fantastic environmental groups in the borough can be given support.

The mushroom farm is in a 30 foot shipping container that is fitted out to enable the best environment for growing the ‘shrooms all year round. The farm is sited on land on an area known at Reeves Corner, at 1B Church Road down in Old Town. It is part of Croydon ReUse Organisation.

For the future, there will be workshops on how to grow the mushrooms at home and the chance to go home with a grow your own kit.

October 2023: Good news. After the farm being mothballed all during the lockdown and some other delays we are delighted to announce that we are back up and running.

We have local resident, Ria Patel, volunteering on the farm and she will be helping run all the necessary functions to grow the Cr’Oysters and get them to market. Best of luck Ria and great to have you on board.

Here’s a very pleased Ria after inoculating her first bag of waste coffee grounds – the first of many.

Happy ‘shrooming Ria!

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Be patient and follow these steps for best results:

1.Keep the bag in a warmish room, an airing cupboard is ideal.

2.Wait for as much of the brown coffee grounds to become covered in the white root structure (mycelium). In most cases it is

completely covered but you might get the odd brown patch still showing. Can be 2-4 weeks.

3.At this stage cut a large cross across the front of the package below the white filter patch of the bag. Cut away the flaps to expose the

surface of the block. Soak the entire block overnight in water. You can now keep the kit on a kitchen window ledge (on a plate) but out of direct sunlight and well ventilated.

4.Keep the exposed surface moist by misting twice a day with water from a spray. If  no sprayer available then just lightly douse with a

teaspoon of water, not too much. Tap water is fine.

5. Be patient and eventually you will start to see small ‘pins’ appearing on the surface. Fruiting is occurring and those fruits are the mushrooms.

Can be 1-2 weeks. Keep up the misting.

6.Let them get to a decent size and when the edge of the cap turns upwards, harvest. There we are Cr’Oyster mushrooms!

Cook and enjoy! Do not eat raw.

7.Let the block rest for a week or two and submerge in water for 8 hours, drain and repeat steps 4 and you may get a second and third crop.