November 30, 2018

Know Your Farmer: Far West Fungi

Know Your Farmer: Far West Fungi

Respect for the Fungi

Many have an affinity for edible fungi, and thanks to John and Toby Garrone, and their fanatical love of fungi, they bring fungi to the people! Far West Fungi has been cultivating mushrooms for 25 years, focusing on the more unusual varieties that typically grow on trees. Known for their freshness and quality, Far West Fungi has a brick-and-mortar in the San Francisco Ferry building, just doors down from ours. We are thrilled to be neighbors with them, and excited to carry their dried mushrooms and mushroom jerky products.

Know Your Farmer: Far West Fungi
(Photo Credit Far West Fungi)

Farm-raised in greenhouses near the Pacific Ocean, their mushrooms are cultivated using certified organic and sustainable practices, with a balance of modern and traditional growing techniques. The cultivation process is quite intricate but here are a few highlights: bricks of sawdust and organic rice bran (substitutes for the logs and trees the mushrooms would typically grow on in nature) are introduced to fungi spawn; an incubation period ensues to encourage growth of the fungi organism, mycelium; once fully grown, the mycelium begins to bloom with mushrooms and they are harvested between 4-12 weeks later, depending on the varietal. So, when we eat mushrooms, we are eating the fruit of the fungi!

Know Your Farmer: Far West Fungi

The Garrone family loves being able to share all mushroom varietals with customers, discussing flavors, textures, and nutritional benefits, and sharing recipe ideas. And with the movement to eat less meat, many are turning to mushrooms as a substitute, which is great news for the Garrone family. They are ready to meet consumer demand, and their mushroom jerky is perfect to satisfy anyone’s craving.

Know Your Farmer: Far West Fungi

We also carry a few special dried mushroom varietals from Far West Fungi that can be added to your farm box. Dried mushrooms will last longer in your pantry and pack a more intense flavor. You can use fewer of them when you are cooking too. Each type of mushroom offers a different flavor and texture, although they all can be enjoyed with rice, soup, and stir-fries, and many other dishes. Check out our blog on How to Rehydrate Dried Mushrooms for more information.

Fungi Fun Facts

1. Fungi organisms are the largest living organisms on earth.
2. Without fungi, we would be living on top of non-decomposed waste.
3. Mushrooms are an excellent source of vitamins, fiber, potassium, protein, selenium, vitamin B and zinc.
4. There are over 10,000 varietals in North America, with common names like Fried Chicken and Lion’s Mane.
5. Hieroglyphics found in Egyptian tombs characterize mushrooms as a plant of immortality.

Know Your Farmer: Far West Fungi

Now that we all know just how special these little fungi are, let’s have a fungi party to celebrate! During the holiday season we have two super fun, grow your own, shiitake and tree oyster mini farms to gift yourself or some fellow fungi.

How To Add Far West Fungi Products to Your Delivery:
CSA members - head on over to our online Farm Stand Market to customize your upcoming delivery. Market is open from noon on Thursday until 10 pm, 2 days before your scheduled delivery day. After you confirm your produce items, click the orange button "Confirm and Continue To Other Farm Products" to add the products to your delivery.

Not part of our farm family? Find out if we deliver to your neighborhood.