KSU team creates a cash crop out of ag waste 

Farmers in Georgia and elsewhere will soon have the potential to turn some of that agricultural waste into a cash crop.

A research team at Kennesaw State University has invented a system for growing culinary mushrooms out of spent peanut shells, cotton gin scraps and other ag byproducts.

Inside 20-foot shipping containers – each outfitted with temperature and humidity controls, and sensors to monitor the environment – the researchers grow the mushrooms out of bags containing the waste. Their project is getting advice and seed investment from GRA’s Greater Yield initiative, which helps bring to market university inventions that benefit agribusiness.

Inside the shipping container environment, a single bag of the agricultural waste can produce multiple mushroom “fruits” in just a few weeks.

Video: KSU’s inventive mushroom-growing system