- Inoculation room is where the substrate is mixed with the mycelium and is compacted into plastic bags.
It actually consists of two rooms – room, where the inoculation of substrate blocks (inoculation) takes place and rooms where substrate bags are placed for cooling after hydrothermal treatment. It is desirable to have a small additional room (3) for temporary storage of finished substrate blocks.
From the clean area there should be three exits leading to:
- the room where the substrate is cooled,
- a changing room (2),
- a corridor for the storage of finished substrate blocks (3)
In other words, the inoculation room itself must not be linked to a dirty area (substrate preparation zone for oyster mushrooms).
Changing room (2) is necessary for changing clothes, which have to be washed with disinfectants after each inoculation process. Changing room can be connected to the common corridor (4), or simply lead outside through the lobby or hall, which is more preferable. All rooms of the zone should be kept clean at all times. After each inoculation substrate remnants need to be disposed of, and the walls, floor and all equipment have to be washed with a disinfectant solution. Before inoculation the room must be disinfected as well.
During inoculation employees are not allowed to leave the clean area. At this time pressure fan operates in the inoculation room, providing a slight overpressure. The ventilation system should be equipped with coarse and fine filtration elements, ensuring incoming air purity.
Tunneling technology production suggests existence of substrate production facility, which must be located away from the growing rooms in order to ensure microbiological purity at an enterprise. If this is not possible – it is necessary to consider such raw materials and substrate blocks logistics that the paths of microbiologically “dirty” and “clean” objects do not cross.
The “clean” zone in the substrate is adjacent to the tunnel gate and treated substrate immediately enters the clean room (inoculation room). Since the tunnel is capable of treating from 10 to 20 tons of substrate simultaneously, the blocks are formed by hydraulic presses. Therefore inoculation room occupies a lot of space and the higher mechanization and automation degree – the bigger room should be – from 100 to 150 m2 and not less than 4 meters in height.
It is also necessary to provide the locker room for employees, a shower room, a dining room and a room for temporary storage of substrate blocks. The ventilation system of a clean zone should provide heating in winter and cooling in summertime along with an appropriate overpressure. The incoming air must be purified via coarse and fine filter elements.
The clean zone equipment:
Vibrating table – starting from 40,000 RUB (around 690 USD). If substrate blocks are filled manually – you can try making some DIY vibrating tables.
Pressure fan – depending on the cubic capacity of the clean area – starting from 7000 RUB or around 120 USD.