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Buying a Mushroom Autoclave: You Don’t Need a Pass Thru Autoclave to Get the Job Done

Photo of oyster mushrooms

Mushroom cultivation can be a challenge. Your prepared substrate is hardly your own to cultivate, given the way every commonplace mushroom or mold tries to colonize it. But the fact that preventing contamination is so important seems to lead many mushroom cultivators and researchers to overcorrect. Priorclave North America (a leading supplier of extremely efficient lab autoclaves) gets many calls from mushroom cultivators scaling up their operations, under the impression that they need to create a “clean-room” environment, complete with a pass-through autoclave.

That’s a prohibitively expensive misunderstanding—and, sadly, one that’s robbing the world of countless mycological innovations (from cruelty-free leather and extremely green and durable building materials to new tools for treating mental illness and, of course, a vaster array of culinary options).

You Don’t Need A Clean Room—But You Do Need A Reliable Mushroom Autoclave

You don’t need a clean-room to cultivate mushrooms—and certainly don’t need a pass-thru autoclave. That said, in most cases, low-tech solutions like “cold sterilization” (which is actually not at all sterilization, but rather a form of pasteurization) or improvised/adapted sterilizers aren’t going to cut it. You’ll still want an actual mushroom autoclave that reliably removes contaminants and speeds drying time (to minimize unwanted moisture). 

As Priorclave CEO Barbra Wells, explains, “As hobbyists become amateur mycologists or small start-ops grow into big producers, they often believe they need to be full-fledged BSL-3 microbiologists, with all the equipment that goes along with that.” That’s an expensive proposition. “They’re then heartbroken to see how far out of reach that can be, in terms of cost. Fortunately, when we talk to these growers and researchers, we can almost always find them an autoclave that fits both their needs and their budget.”

Among our mycology/mushroom cultivating customers, the EH320 model Priorclave with vacuum drying option is the most sought after mushroom autoclave. They find that with this large front-loading mushroom autoclave they’re able to efficiently process substrate and avoid contamination without the expense and difficulty of a clean-room style setup. 

We built the EH320 front loading autoclave for efficient, reliable operation under a broad range of conditions. Many standard lab autoclaves sharply restrict your ability to program custom cycles. (That’s especially annoying when your use case might fall outside of what the designers imagined.) Every Priorclave, regardless of size or other features, comes with the same fully featured, fully programmable control system. Multi-program memory, one-button start, and a range of logging, load, and chamber monitoring options. 

Supporting Your Work with Lifetime Technical Support

Even with proper regular user maintenance, something is eventually going to break. This is especially likely for labs that sterilize “non-standard” loads, like bagged soil or substrate. Priorclave has made their reputation on customer support and is accustomed to working with research, food & beverage, and agricultural customers. We understand the breadth of unique challenges in the world beyond university labs and medical facilities. That’s why we back every unit we ship with free lifetime technical support.

Are you a mushroom growing enthusiast? Discouraged because you think you need more equipment to level up your growing capacity? We can help you find the right size model for your operation. Simply measure one of your full substrate bags or blocks and contact us to discuss how our non-jacketed autoclaves might better serve your mushroom sterilization needs (without a major renovation).