Meet this Kulgam woman who earns livelihood through Mushroom cultivation

Tahira helps over a dozen women to start their own units

A Woman from Qaimoh village in South Kashmir’s Kulgam is growing organic mushrooms to earn her livelihood and become financially independent.

By taking to the cultivation at home, Tahira Bashir has ensured Rs 75,000 annual income for her family.
Tahira while talking to the news agency—Kashmir News Observer (KNO) said that she received training for the mushroom cultivation through the Agricultural Department in kashmir and subsequently established her own business venture near her residence.
At her venture, backed by her family has been earning her livelihood as well and she gives credit of her success to the NRLM department.
“I came through different schemes through NRLM that benefited me a lot and also thanked trainers who supported her throughout this journey,” she said.
She started mushroom cultivation in a room at her home and harvested mushrooms locally known as ‘Heddar’ in her very first attempt.
“After getting a good response in my very first attempt, I approached the agriculture department for more mushroom bags, she said, adding that, through cultivation, I not only earned a livelihood for my family but I also helped many people in marketing mushrooms,” she said.
She said: “I personally did marketing of 5 such units as I also spend my earnings on my necessities and can fulfill my aim to become an educated businessman.”
With this business, she said: “I feel financially independent and many other educated women of the area have got inspired who are set to start this business as well.”
But before setting up her own venture, Tahira’s experience with her financial conditions drew her to start mushroom cultivation.
She would support her family and would invest her earnings to expand her business.
After sowing mushroom seeds, the crop gets ready in a few weeks. Once the crop is ready, the mushrooms are placed in small boxes with proper packaging. “The packed organic mushroom boxes are sold in vegetable markets between Rs 25 and Rs 50,” she said.
She has now helped around a one dozen women in the district to start their mushroom units who are about to start their units now.
Mushrooms have become a famous vegetable in Kashmir, and over the years, Mushroom Yakhni, a delicious curry cooked with yoghurt and spices, has been introduced in Kashmiri multi-cuisine, Wazwan as well, pushing the demands of Mushrooms up.
With the success of Tahira, she has become an inspiration for hundreds of unemployed women and dozens of unemployed women have started joining this field and trying their luck.
She said that this is very easy and safe for unemployed youth especially for girls to start a mushroom unit and earn their own and become independent—(KNO)

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