Growth, in people and businesses, brings changes. In many ways, changes can also bring growth. With that in mind, we have many upcoming changes.
Much like penicillin, the idea for creating custom "weapon" mushrooms to fight illnesses came about on accident. A Tradd Cotter mushroom farmer and researcher in Greenville, SC returned after a vacation to discover two different strains of fungi warring with each other in a petri dish he had thrown out. After taking a closer look, he realized that there were droplets on the invading species, but none on the original. These droplets were metabolites, a mixture the mushrooms create to fight off dangerous microbes.
One of our goals is to increase awareness of the many ways mushrooms can benefit the world, thus bringing them back into mainstream culture, in more than just culinary arts. A good way to spread awareness of the magnificent mushroom is having numerous people growing them and educating others.
Death is often a taboo subject, but it's one that needs to be discussed. It's inevitable that we all will die at one point. Have you given any thought to what will happen to your body when you're no longer alive? I have, for many years, actually. I recently found out about something called an Infinity Suit, which is a suit with mushroom spores infused into it. When someone dies they can be put into the suit and buried in it. As the mushrooms grow the decomposing body will feed them. Sound kinda creepy? Maybe, but here are three big reasons you should consider one.
In the summer of 2012, an incredible mushroom was found in Sevierville, TN. An old persimmon tree had been cut down and paved over, and rising from that stump, punching straight through the pavement, even, was a massive reishi mushroom. Called Ling Zhi in Chinese, “the mushroom of immortality,” reishi has a long history as a medicinal mushroom. Andrew was approached by Hugh Brewer, of Brewer’s Mushrooms, with a sample of this amazing mushroom, and it was agreed that Andrew would clone it for Hugh, and both would keep a copy of the culture to use.
With mushroom foraging coming more into season we've been talking about education being a good thing before eating mushrooms. I'm sure many of you know at least some of the poisonous mushrooms to avoid, so let's play a game. I'm going to post a series of pictures. You try to guess if they're poisonous or not, then click on the picture to open the link and see if you're right. Ready?
Not too long ago, I wrote about wet weather causing Sulphur Tufts to grow all over and raising a health concern. Now, with El Niño causing heavy rains in California, Death Cap mushrooms are popping up. These mushrooms are highly poisonous; so it is important to be cautious, but as always, I believe education can go a long way, so here's an easy how to identify Death Cap.
Researchers might have discovered the beginning of a solution in mushrooms that eat plastic waste, and don't seem to absorb any of the dangerous chemicals. While this is just in the prototype stage, the research can open the doors to discovering more potential solutions. If this is able to progress we could get rid of a hazardous product while producing a necessary one; food.
We started out growing on straw, but for several reasons Andrew dubbed it "Satan's substrate". This is because the Satanic straw makes a huge mess when being processed, so it had to be done outside, making weather a common problem and causing a lot of delays. The chipper didn't like to function properly a lot of days, slowing down our already slow process. The worst thing; however, about the devilish stuff, was the fact that it made Andrew really sick. We're not sure if it was mold spores, the dust, a combination of the two, or something else entirely.
We shipped out several grow bags of both Chicken of the Woods and Maitake (also known as hen of the woods) to our contract growers. They will try different methods on the bags and see if they can duplicate our success. If all goes well, you could be seeing Chicken of the Woods on our menu in the semi near future.
A few people have become concerned because the rewards are late shipping out. We understand the concern, so we decided it's time to address the concerns in a more direct manner. In the Kickstarter campaign we were upfront about the possible challenges that might be faced advancing the business, and; unfortunately, we ran into a few of them
It shouldn't be surprising that winter is causing problems in the mushroom world. A few weeks ago, I wrote about mushrooms laws to try to protect people from poisonous mushrooms in the wild. While I still don't believe we need laws against foraging, I believe even more that we need education about mushroom safety.
Weather this cold makes me think of two things: hot chocolate, and soup. Mushrooms are great in a nice robust soup, like this one. I think shiitake mushrooms would go great in it, and I would most likely add in some potatoes. I like my soup with some great rolls, but of course they are many other good sides to have with soup.
I love meat. I enjoy everything about it, honestly. I've tried to give it up a few times, and I get sick every time. While I enjoy meat, I'm also trying to get healthier. It's not easy, but there's good news. Many restaurants are starting to blend hamburger meat with mushrooms. Up to half the meat will actually be mushrooms, but most people like them just as mush as 100% meat.
While some foods can cause health problems if not careful, do we need laws or education?Properly educated people can decide for themselves what risks are worth it. They can also use the education to negate many of the risks. If more people knew about mushrooms, and how to identify them, there wouldn't be a stigma surrounding wild mushrooms, and no need for a law banning them.
As we prepare for the coming year, we wanted to wish everyone a Happy New Year. There are many exciting things in the plans for next year. To keep updated on all current events, make sure you are subscribed to our newsletter. It's now being sent out on the first of every month, so keep an eye out for it in your inbox.
Every year at Christmas; one of the main things my family looks forward to is the breakfast casserole I make. I get it ready the night before, leave it in the fridge over night, and then stick it in the oven in the morning. It makes the morning easier, since it is usually a pretty hectic day. It also helps make sure everyone gets something other than sweets in their bellies.