When I am excited about finding a new type of mushroom or even considering culturing my own mushrooms, the first thing others share back with me is, “You have to be careful, they can be dangerous.” (or some other similar phrase) It’s a downer for sure and quite frankly the cautionary tone is annoying. If you haven’t researched mushrooms yourself you cannot be an educated authority on the topic.
I have never met anyone who has gotten ill or died from eating mushrooms. I have met those who have gotten deathly ill from eating oysters, restaurant food and commercially sold food products. In many decades of life I have heard only a few stories of people who died from eating mushrooms in the Province of B.C., where I live. When I google how many people have died in B.C., from eating mushrooms in the past few decades, NO factual research shows up! There are many warnings though about the Death Cap Mushrooms. Specifically in the Greater Victoria region.
Having written this, it doesn’t mean I recommend going out and eating any old mushroom without researching it first. I recommend foragers research the mushrooms they find to confidently know their mushrooms are edible and that they have reassurance they are not poisonous. Don’t assume mushrooms are safe because they are growing in urban areas. Do your due diligence and find answers through foraging mentors, experts and/or through field guides, local groups, etc.
Surprised by arrival of the Prince of all Mushrooms – agaricus augustus
- Mushrooms Demystified by Author David Arora
- The Complete Mushroom Hunter, Revised: Illustrated Guide to Foraging, Harvesting, and Enjoying Wild Mushrooms – Including new sections on growing your own incredible edibles and off-season collecting by Author Gary Lincoff