The Autumn Issue of the Japanese Exotic Mushroom is officially out
Saturday, September 23 marks the autumn equinox and the start of the astronomical autumn. For mushroom farmers around the world, autumn marks the start of the busy season. Nowhere is this more intense in Japan, where both prices and demand for mushrooms shoot up between October and coast through to around the end of January. There is a scientific basis for human cravings for rich, savory foods and increased appetites during autumn—what the Japanese call shokuyoku no aki or “autumn appetite.” The reduced UVB radiation and shorter hours impact serotonin levels, which leads to increased appetite according to the theory.
Whether real or not, autumn is also the natural season for most wild mushrooms and it is no wonder that for cultures across the world this means that traditional foods for autumn often feature mushrooms. Cooler temps also mean people without home A/C (an experience that this writer, living in Japan can personally attest), are willing to turn on the hot stove for an hour or more at a time, cooking big hearty meals at home. We are pleased to release the latest edition of the Japanese Exotic Mushroom Journal in time for the start of autumn. The digital issue is also available here: Japanese Exotic Mushroom Journal (jemj.jp)
The cover theme of the latest issue is nameko (Pholiota adioposa), with an introduction from American Mushroom Institute President Rachel Roberts on the American exotics sector, a discussion of ergothioneine that concludes my health marketing series, and a farm profile of one of Japan’s only lion’s mane mushroom farms. We will wrap up 2023 with the 4th issue of the Japanese Exotic Mushroom Journal in December.
While “Japanese” is in our name, our project is an English-language journal covering everything to do with exotic mushroom farming, but grounded in the Japanese growing systems that excel in growing high quality but affordable exotic mushrooms of all varieties. 2023 has been an extremely busy year for us, launching as a subscription service, getting our website running, and preparing for the Dutch Mushroom Days industry event in May. 2023 is already shaping up to be another banner year for the mushroom industry, and we hope our already global subscriber base grows even more diverse over the remaining few months.