Fungusloci is an experimental urban micro-farm project where oyster mushrooms are cultivated on waste coffee grounds in the heart of Stroud’s town centre. The micro-farm was opened in spring 2015, designed, built and managed by artist and educator Dominic Thomas with the help of a ‘Local Food’ grant from Stroud District Council and support from SVA.
As well as supplying fresh and healthy locally grown produce to cafés, restaurants and the general public, the Fungusloci project is a model for small-scale sustainable food growing. We have been collecting and reprocessing up to 150kg of used coffee grounds a week from Stroud cafes (previously being sent to landfill). That’s up to one ton of waste every six weeks being converted into a healthy local food product. At the end of the process a top quality compost and soil improver is produced that can go back into gardens and allotments to help produce other local food crops.
Education and collaboration has been a key part of the Fungusloci farm project. We have worked with schools, youth groups and adult students. It has provided employment and volunteering opportunities for a dozen people and we have shared our expertise with similar projects across the UK.