Characterization of Fungal Foams from Edible Mushrooms Using Different Agricultural Wastes as Substrates for Packaging Material
Agricultural wastes and leaves, which are classified as lignocellulosic biomass, have been used as substrates in the production of fungal foams due to the significant growth of the mushroom industry in recent years. Foam derived from fungi can be utilized in a variety of industrial applications, including the production of packaging materials. Here, white oyster mushrooms (Pleurotus florida) and yellow oyster mushrooms (Pleurotus citrinopileatus) were cultivated on rice husk, sawdust, sugarcane bagasse, and teak leaves. Fungal foams were produced after 30 days of incubation, which were then analyzed using scanning electron microscopy (SEM), thermal analysis (TGA), and chemical structure using Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy. Mechanical testing examined the material&rsquo;s hardness, resilience, and springiness, and water absorption tests were used to determine the durability of the fungal foams. Our findings demonstrated that fungal foams made from rice husk and teak leaves in both mycelium species showed better mechanical properties, thermal stability, and minimal water absorption compared to the other substrates, and can thus have great potential as efficient packaging materials.