Locally and internationally, the most popular mushroom remains the white button mushroom.
Legend surrounds the humble mushroom: Traces of mushroom fungi were found in Stone Age settlements; early Egyptians believed they could cure illness and prolong life; while the Irish believed the “little people” sought shelter under them; mushrooms have formed part of Chinese pharmacology for centuries.
White button mushrooms were first cultivated in Paris in the late seventeenth century, after they were found growing in composted manure in which melons and pineapples were grown. These mushrooms are sometimes called “champignon de Paris” because of their origin. Today mushrooms are readily available for us to use and enjoy.
Mushroom production in the United States quadrupled in the thirty years 1970 to 1999 from 194 million pounds to 848 million pounds.
Did You Know?
There are over 2500 species of mushroom found worldwide. Mushrooms are an important part of the BC agricultural industry, providing a valuable food source locally and a significant export product.