Spirulina (Athrospira platensis) is a blue green algae. It is a nutritious protein diet supplement and it is also used in manufacture of many medicines and cosmetics. It contains plenty of protein, antioxidants, many vitamins and minerals. This is a super food for a healthy lifestyle.
The income of the farmer continues to decline due to increasing cost and low returns in agriculture. To increase the income of the farmer, there is a lot of potential in Spirulina farming. Nowadays, the market value of one kg of dried spirulina powder is around Rs. 1000. Hence, by cultivating Spirulina, farmers can earn good income, more than regular crops, by investing less.
Professional level cultivation of spirulina, gradually started in many parts of India, especially in Tamil Nadu. Due to problems related to monsoon uncertainty and the sale of crop products in India, the trend of farmers is also going to Spirolina cultivation because there is a fixed market for spirolina and it is a regular income generating crop.
Production of spiraluna
Although Spirulina can be grown in any convenient size cement or plastic tanks, but a 10 x 5 x 1.5 ft tank tank is suitable. To grow it, 1000 liters of water should be filled up to a height of about one to two feet in the tank.
Hot weather is required to grow spirulina. Spirulina algae grows well in temperature from 25 to 38 degree celsius. In winter, tank water can be heated from heaters.
Growing spirulina requires seed or mother culture. Put about 1 kg of spirulina mother culture in 1000 liters of water tank.
With this, add 8 grams of sodium bicarbonate, 5 g sodium chloride, 0.2 g urea, 0.5 g potassium sulphate, 0.16 gm magnesium sulfate, 0.052 ml phosphoric acid and 0.05 ml iron sulphate (measurement for one liter water). Spirulina starter kit can also be bought from an organic store, which has a mother culture and a grinding solution.
Spirulina requires sunlight and carbon dioxide like other green plants.
Therefore, the water of tank water is stirred for half hour daily per week, with the help off a stick by mixing culture and all things in the water, so that spirulina filament can get adequate sunlight and carbon dioxide.
Spirulina harvesting and processing
After 10 days, the spirulina is ready for harvest. Removes algae using a plastic bucket. Algae is put in a vessel that is attached to the filter, which drains extra water.
Algae is washed and filtered twice by clean water twice, then wrapped in clean muslin cloth and pressed it under 50 kg of weight, removes moisture from dry spirulina.
After this, make it in a noodle form of noodles in a small noodle making machine and leave it for 2-3 hours to dry.
After drying well the noodle of algae, grind them in the flour machine and get them checked in the powder laboratory so that the quality is not reduced.
After this the fine powder is packed in small airtight plastic bag and is sold in the market.
Approximately 2 grams of spirular powder can be used by mixing in cold water, juice or ice cream.
Total income in cultivation of Spirulina
Increasing production of spirulina in 15 tanks of 10 x 5 x 1.5 feet size, approximately 1 kg of spirulina can be cut from one tank per day. Due to the sale of dried spirulina powders at a rate of Rs 1,000 per kg, there is an income of around Rs. 60,000/month. Even if you take out labor and other expenses of 5-6 people, then also there is a net profit of Rs. 30,000/month.