• High-Performance Autoclave for Food Producers


High-Performance Autoclave for Food Producers

Aug 09 2023

The Priorclave EH320 cylindrical chamber laboratory autoclave fitted with a vacuum drying option is attracting the attention of mycologists and food producers, and in particular mushroom growers. This is because it has the ability consistently and reliably sterilise challenging loads such as grain.

Grains like wheat and rye berries are an almost ideal medium for germinated mushroom spores. Not simply because they are nutrient-rich, each individual kernel of grain acts as its own inoculation site for mycelium. Allowing mycelium to flourish in the controlled environment of grain spawn lays the necessary groundwork for them to reliably outcompete any other microorganisms in their bulk substrate.

Complete sterilisation of mushroom grain bags and any grain to be added to bulk substrate is essential. But creating a sterile grain bag for mushroom cultivation is a challenge. Contamination is the most common source of failure and tends to come from improper preparation of bulk substrate prior to inoculating it with mushroom culture.

Bacteria are both the most numerous biological contaminants and the most troublesome. Moist, room-temperature bacteria double every 20 minutes or so. In theory, a lone surviving bacterium in a heat-sealed grain bag will spawn more than a million offspring in just 10 hours. That one bacterium can recolonise an entire batch of substrate in a few days.

So, whether it’s for research or cultivation, properly preparing the fungus substrate is essential and that is where the EH320 autoclave from Priorclave with a vacuum facility is proving successful. The combination of features such as forced air cooling to reduce cycle times and automatic timed free steaming for improved air removal and vacuum facilities all add to the overall sterilising performance, particularly in labs involved with grain cultivation.

Priorclave designed the cylindrical chamber of the EH320 with a taller profile than that found in most ‘cylindrical’ machines, in fact it has a 630mm diameter chamber which is 1025mm deep. This makes it a viable alternative to large more costly rectangular autoclaves, able to achieve the same sterilisation throughput.

The front-loading EH320, cylindrical chamber autoclave from Priorclave is becoming a preferred choice is support of mushroom cultivation.

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